Today's New York Islanders game, their ninth road game in the last 23 days, is a wake-up-and-be-ready affair. A 1 p.m. start in Boston where the Bruins, once left for dead, have completed a season-long climb to the top of the (New) Atlantic Division standings.
They got to first place via an OT loss to Carolina because NHL.
So their mission is by no means finished: At 84 points, they're just one ahead of both Florida teams, which means the difference between division champions and starting the playoffs on the road is a single point.
The Islanders are in their own dogfight, two points behind the Rangers for second place (and home ice) in the Metro and four points ahead of the Penguins, who beat Columbus last night but may have lost Evgeni Malkin.
Islanders (37-20-8, 3rd/Metro) @ Bruins (38-23-8, 1st/Atlantic)
1 p.m. | MSG+ (local), Sportsnet 1 (Canada)
WNYE 91.5 FM, WRHU 88.7 FM, LI NEWS 103.9 FM
[something about touchdowns?] Garden
Boston, brah: Stanley Cup of Chowder
The Bruins are basically healthy -- though destroyer of dreams Patrice Bergeron took a maintenance day yesterday -- and you can see their expected lines over at SCOC.
The Isles have a new line shuffle, with Kyle Okposo and Josh Bailey becoming John Tavares' newest (and oldest) wingers.
Josh Bailey - John Tavares - Kyle Okposo
Nikolay Kulemin - Frans Nielsen - Ryan Strome
Shane Prince - Brock Nelson - Anders Lee
Matt Martin - Casey Cizikas - Cal Clutterbuck
The defensive pairs remain limited by injuries to Marek Zidlicky and Calvin de Haan.
Capuano says de Haan and Grabovski skated today, Zidlicky "out a little while."— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) March 12, 2016
That means of course:
Nick Leddy - Johnny Boychuk
Thomas Hickey - Travis Hamonic
Brian Strait - Ryan Pulock
Bridgeport has been banged up on the blueline too, so this is the likely look for a while here barring other injuries.
Thomas Greiss gets the start in goal, having taken over the job after Jaroslav Halak's long-term injury. My name is Tuukka is in for the Bruins.
The Bruins are wearing green "St. Patrick's Day"-themed warmups...
Bruins sporting their St. Patrick's Day green jerseys. Kevan Miller on the ice for the pre-game skate. https://t.co/jMyaYiSX8u— StanleyCup ofChowder (@cupofchowdah) March 12, 2016
...since the threads are basically Scottish, not Irish, they might as well.
Leave your First Islanders Goal Picks here by gametime. This is your in-game open thread.