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New York Islanders at Washington Capitals [Game #6 thread]

The Islanders are without Beauvillier, the Caps are missing a bit more.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-New York Islanders at Washington Capitals
When we last saw each other, not so long ago.
Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

The Islanders visit the {checks standings} East Division-leading Capitals for their first of many meetings in this condensed, yet division-expanded season.

The Capitals were one of the teams vanquished in the Islanders’ run to the conference final last spr—, er, late summer, so there’s that storyline:

The Capitals are of course missing four key players thanks to the card game or whatever Alex Ovechkin and friends were doing hanging out in a hotel room together against pandemic rules. But rookie goalie Vitek Vanecek has stepped in just fine, coming off a 45-save shootout loss against the Sabres.

The Islanders are missing Anthony Beauvillier, who left last game in the second period and was officially placed on IR today. Kieffer Bellows and Oliver Wahlstrom were candidates to take his place.

Important PSA Reminders

Don’t be alarmed, the Capitals will debut their big-ol-W third jerseys — which is a different thing than the 4th “reverse retro” whatever thing NHL teams (even the Islanders, sort of) are doing this season. Meanwhile, Peter Laviolette is now behind the Caps bench, and Zdeno Chara is on their blueline. I know, right?! 2021 is already its own unique version of WTF?