The New York Islanders wrap up their Florida weekend with a visit to the Tampa Bay Lightning, who also traveled after playing yesterday. The Isles lost via circus shootout in Sunrise, while the Lightning lost 4-2 in Washington.
The difference for the Isles from last night is Thomas Hickey, officially activated from injured reserve today, is expected to be back for just his fifth game of the season. Hickey suffered a finger injury in preseason and returned only to take a leg injury four games into his season. His return is a welcome sight for the third defensive pair, where Brian Strait and Marek Zidlicky take turns drawing the ire of fans and general "You're not Ryan Pulock!" derision.
The Isles didn't really have to make a meaningful roster move to accommodate Hickey's return: Rather than return Adam Pelech to Bridgeport, they were able to put J-F Berube on IR. Berube had been in Bridgeport but on a conditioning assignment, where he got injured in his first game.
After last year's run to the Cup finals, the Lightning are off to a disappointing start to the season. However, they come into this one hobbling, but not slumping: Tyler Johnson left yesterday's game injured, and he joins Cedric Paquette, Jonathan Drouin and Ondrej Palat on the injured list. But before Friday's loss they had won three in a row following a weekend sweep (well, one was via shootout, so...) by those pesky Panthers.
With both teams playing last night, both will likely make changes in goal: Ben Bishop is expected to start for the Lightning, Thomas Greiss for the Isles.
No morning skate, so no official lineup news coming from either team until closer to game time. But all appears to be Hickey dory.
Leave your First Islanders Goal Picks right this way.