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Islanders News: Isles win(?), Barzal hits 75, Hickey hits 400, MacKinnon rises

Also: Josh Bailey never wanted to leave.

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Pittsburgh Penguins v New York Islanders
You’re facing the wrong way!
Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The Islanders played well for 60 minutes last night and dumped the Penguins, who were playing to reclaim first place in the Metro.

Go figure.

Islanders Reading

  • About last night: Where has this team been all 2018? [LHH] Now at 75 points, Mathew Barzal credits the teammates whom he constantly makes look good. [Isles] Barzal is on his way to greatness, Anders Lee continues to grow, Chistopher Gibson bounces back. [Post] “A lot of unfortunate things have happened,” Barzal said of the last two months. [Newsday] The Penguins know they were outplayed, Doug Weight said his team played like they actually wanted to win. [NHL] Maybe the Penguins were just rusty after not playing since Thursday. [PensBurgh]
  • With the playoffs out of reach, the Isles are transitioning to audition mode in terms of roles for next season, though Dennis Seidenberg slotting in for Sebastian Aho doesn’t quite do that. [Newsday]
  • Josh Bailey discusses why he wanted to stay with the Isles rather than test the market, a decision he made before the season and which a career-high season wasn’t going to change. He and his young family like Long Island. [The Athletic]
  • Meanwhile, the ever-robotically focused John Tavares is all about the now, finishing season strong, not at all thinking about The Decision. If it were another player I wouldn’t believe him but I kind of buy that this is just how he rolls. [Newsday]
  • Thomas Hickey reflected as he prepared to play his 400th NHL game last night. [Islanders Insight]
  • After finishing up at University of Prince Edward Island and shining in nine games with ECHL Worcester, right-handed defenseman Ryan MacKinnon has officially signed an AHL deal for the rest of this season and next with Bridgeport. [Connecticut Post]
  • Michael Fornabaio notes MacKinnon becomes the fifth #49 and first since the legendary Sebastian Collberg. [Soundin’ Off]
  • Ilya Sorokin keeps reeling off shutouts for CSKA, while Anatoly Golyshev’s team has been eliminated from the KHL playoffs. [Isles prospects report]


Last night’s NHL scores include the Blue Jackets winning yet again to tie the Penguins on points (but with one more game played).

  • The GMs have no consensus on changing offside rules, would like to have all goalie interference challenges handled by the war room in Toronto, and are aware that Congess’ latest rushed and short-sighted move has unintended consequences on player trades, maybe. [Sportsnet | NHL]
  • Marc-Andre Fleury was injured again in Las Vegas’ win over the Canucks. [NHL]
  • Terrible news for Erik Karlsson and his family. [Ottawa Citizen | Senators statement]
  • Big news in NCAA hockey as longtime Minnesota Golden Gophers coach Don Lucia steps down. [Gophers]
  • Ranking all of the NHL teams’ draft performance from 2011 to 2015, based on some games played per pick and impact measures. [The Athletic]

Petr Mrazek has a reputation as feisty and then some, which helped fuel his exit from Detroit. Last night he was pulled by the Flyers — against his old team — and none too happy. The Flyers came back to tie but lost in the shootout: