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Isles-Lightning: Smith injury 'mystery,' Lightning folding?

Don't you dare -- don't you for one moment think the Islanders are the only club that deals with shall-we-say "obtuse" goaltender injury info. Mike Smith -- last seen in uniform throwing an upper-body physical tantrum after being pulled in Philly -- is still questionable, and his injury is "a bit of a mystery." (And don't you love it when a trainer's benign quote can be interpreted in so many ways?)

While the Lightning are not currently the Fine Upstanding Organization you'd want to compare your favorite club to, they nonetheless provide the Islanders company in the whole if-we-knew-we'd-have-to-kill-you school of full goaltender injury awareness. Ah, but that's an old meme: In truth, the Islanders have gotten much better about injury disclosure (no doubt in part thanks to reporter and fan pressure). And look! Not a single extra man-game lost to overly informative injury disclosure! Who knew?

Isle-east_medium          Tb-li_medium

New York Islanders (16-30-5) at Tampa Bay Lightning (17-24-11)

7:30 p.m. EST | A Newspaper (they still exist?) Forum | MSG+

Lightning meets Internet: Lightning Strikes | Jon Jordon (HB) | Bolts Blog

[Bolts Blog will be the guest on Saturday's HNLI podcast, with an Islanders Castaway (blogger) who's clearly spent too much time this year on his studies!]

So that means new signee Mike McKenna, who made his NHL debut and cleaned up Karri Ramo's mess against the Islanders, is likely in goal again as the Lightning try to end a four-game losing streak. For the Isles, it sounds like Yann Danis returns. McKenna suffered a tough-luck comeback loss against the Penguins in the interim, after Evgeni Malkin bribed his teammates before the third period.

Vinny Fights, Team Folds

Meanwhile, the Lightning management were upset that after Vinny Lecavalier's big, bold fight against Tim Jackman [Jackman: "Are you really gonna fight?" Lecavalier: PUNCH - "Punch-means-yes!"] the rest of the team didn't rally around him.

"I was extremely, extremely disappointed with our players," Lawton said Wednesday. "Vinny did the most noble thing he could do in his position outside of scoring, which is stand up for the team, and the team didn't respond for him. That was very hurtful, disappointing and upsetting."

Based on their operation of what was very recently a promising franchise, I imagine Lightning management is flummoxed, hurt, disappointed and upset by a lot of what their roster does on the ice these days. I submit again: I prefer the Isles' future prospects.

Lightning Franchise Folding? (lh 3)

I am checking into a rumor (translation: I am printing something I have no hope of confirming) I heard a few paragraphs ago that the Lightning are FOLDING. I am like a totally huge fan of this organization and its fanbase and I truly don't want to see them fold. In my time watching hockey and eating wild mushrooms I have always been amazed by the passion of Lightning fans. I would totally like put them in maybe my top 5 American Hockey Fanbases for passion and knowledge and suntans, and top 3 for bikinis along with Florida, Phoenix, Nashville, San Jose, Atlanta, Los Angeles, and Ottawa.

I will check into this more and you will be the first to know. I truly hope it doesn't happen but thanks for reading and if you still haven't agreed to be a PRIVILEDGED PAYING SUBSCRIBER to my site, maybe this will help you as it not only keeps the site running, it also pays for mushrooms that produce hallucinations such as this.

Injuries: The Plague Continues

With that satire over, in injury news, big summer sign-and-trade Andrej Meszaros may miss his first match in 298 games. Nate Thompson is on Injured Reserve -- again -- but that is par for the Islanders' course. The big injury, Mark Streit, is still "day-to-day."

Tank Update

The Islanders are again four points behind 29th Atlanta, and eight behind 27th Tampa Bay.