Like every fan — for once, all are in agreement — New York Islanders coach Doug Weight was disappointed with the entire “embarrassing, zero effort” performance in Minnesota, though the primary culprit was and continues to be the power play.
So Friday’s practice in Nashville, the second leg of this two-game road trip, saw a new mix of lines and the promise of Ryan Pulock getting another look.
But we’ll see. A well-heeded warning from Weight via Newsday was that these changes could be “just for practice.”
A conventional reading of the practice lines would have Pulock slotting in while Calvin de Haan sits. Sitting the Carp lad doesn’t make much sense though, so we’ll see what comes Saturday game time.
This is how they lined up Friday:
Jaroslav Halak in goal (duh) and Pulock (!) probably in the lineup, says Doug Weight. New lines at forward were:
#Isles lines at practice today in Nashville:— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) October 27, 2017
For the Twitter-averse, that is:
So then, a switch of Jordan Eberle from the top line with leading scorer Josh Bailey. A move of Brock Nelson to the wing next to Mathew Barzal (and Eberle). Plus two grinder lines with Casey Cizikas between Andrew Ladd and Jason Chimera and Anthony Beauvillier in Cizikas’ familiar spot on the fourth line.
Said there'll be changes to the PP tomorrow in practice. "This was a winnable game. It pisses you off that we wasted half of it."— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) October 27, 2017
...the quite incompetent power play was remixed to look like this:
Again for the Twitter-averse, that’s:
PP1: Lee - Tavares - Bailey - Barzal - Leddy
PP2: Ladd - Nelson - Eberle - Beauvillier - Pulock
Hilariously, many fans on the social mediaz act like it is an inherent disaster that the Islanders would consider four forwards and one defenseman on the power play, never mind that tons of successful teams use such a setup throughout the league.
The defensive pairs in practice included Calvin de Haan and frequent scratch Dennis Seidenberg together.
Weight said Pulock likely to play tomorrow and someone on D would come out. Hasn't decided. D pairs were 50-6, 2-55, 14-42 and 44-4 today.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) October 27, 2017
Charitably, that could just be to look at other mixes. Apocalyptically, that would have de Haan scratched for some reason.
But whatever. We’ll see Saturday night in Music City.