With a 2-5 record, including a 3-1 loss to the Caps at Barclays Center on Monday, the Islanders' preseason has been mostly underwhelming (as far as glorified practice sessions and job auditions can go). But, even worse, they've run up against the injuries everyone hates to see before the regular season even starts. Thomas Hickey is out a month or more with an upper body injury and Jaroslav Halak, will finish the preseason with only two period played because of another undisclosed injury (he's still up-in-the-air for next Friday's opener against the Blackhawks).
So the key for today is for the Islanders to make it out of DC with the same players they went there with. Especially with their next game almost a week from today.
Lines and line-up info from Arthur Staple:
#Isles lines at WSH today: Lee-Barzal-Strome, Bailey-Nielsen-Okposo, Nelson-Grabovski-Petrov, Boulton-Cizikas-Bernier.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) October 4, 2015
#Isles D/G at WSH today: Pelech-Mayfield, Czuczman-Pulock, Strait-Zidlicky. Greiss/Williams in goal.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) October 4, 2015
Scott Mayfield, Kevin Czuczman and Adam Pelech were recalled from Bridgeport this morning.
John Tavares, Nikolay Kulemin, Travis Hamonic, Johnny Boychuk, Nick Leddy, and Cal Clutterbuck are among those with absent notes from the moms today. There's no word yet on if there are plans for everyone to get together to watch the Packers-49ers game today at 4 pm.
For the Caps, Alex Ovechkin and Braden Holtby will be in the line-up, per Isabelle Khurshudyan of the Washington Post:.
Here are the rosters for tonight. Appears Eric Boulton is again in the lineup. Holtby expected to play whole game. pic.twitter.com/vrmrN9kYiH— Isabelle Khurshudyan (@ikhurshudyan) October 4, 2015
Eric Boulton and Tom Wilson are both playing, thus continuing the battle of halfwits no one wants to see continue. Either they fight and get the hostilities over with or they don't, in which case Wilson remains an Islanders bogeyman and Caps beatwriters get to ask him another year's worth of questions about being the Islanders' bogeyman.
Live and In Color
The game can be watched on both MSG+ and on NHL Network. It's the final NHL hockey anyone will see until Wednesday's season opening game between the Habs and Leafs.
So soak it in and keep your fingers crossed.