The New York Islanders make their second trip to Raleigh this season to take on the Metropolitan’s second place team in the Carolina Hurricanes. The Islanders made relatively short work of the Philadelphia Flyers yesterday, defeating them by a score of six to one to jump the Flyers in the standings and move into sixth place. The Hurricanes last played on Friday against the San Jose Sharks and defeated them by a score of four to three in a shootout.
The Islanders are the tired team going into a rested opponent which puts them at a disadvantage in this one. Beyond that, Carolina has the advantage in just about every possession metric on the planet and have looked like world beaters under new head coach Rod Brind’amour. The Islanders did manage to defeat the Hurricanes in their first matchup in overtime, but it took a stellar performance from Thomas Greiss and may take another one here today.
The Islanders typical fourth line will not be in service tonight since Cal Clutterbuck is not available. Clutterbuck took a hard (albeit legal) hit from Radko Gudas and did not return. No updates were available from Barry Trotz other than, “I saw him; he’s alive.” Tom Kuhnhackl will take his place tonight.
Petr Mrazek will man the net for Carolina tonight. Mrazek has been about as mediocre as it gets over the past season and an eighth - he’s has about 45 games played with 1999 minutes of five-on-five play, 959 shots against, and a dSV% of +.02%. He’s boom-or-bust and is open to some rather bad games, so the Islanders could surprise in this one. With that being said, if he plays around his average it is going to be a tough contest for them.
The game starts at 5:00 P.M. E.S.T.