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New York Islanders at Vegas Golden Knights [Game #6]: Idling through the desert

In which the Islanders aim to head home on a high note.

Vegas Golden Knights v Dallas Stars - Game Three
(Nothing to do with tonight’s game but it’s a neat photo) Kevin Putzig, assistant equipment manager of the New York Islanders, sews in a player tracking chip during the 2020 Playoff Bubble in Edmonton.
Photo by Andy Devlin/NHLI via Getty Images

The Vegas Golden Knights and the New York Islanders each carry high expectations into the season but sit in last place in their respective divisions before they face off tonight in Vegas.

The Knights are the last team in the league without a power play goal. Sooo...stay out of the box tonight!

The Isles are 2-2-1, the Knights are 1-3-0, and both teams really need points here for obvious reasons. It’s also the back-end of a back-to-back for the Isles, who won 3-0 in Arizona last night. By probability back-to-backs are a threat to many teams but...under Barry Trotz? Not as much. Per the official site:

Under Barry Trotz, the Isles are 21-4-4 (.793) in back-ends. This is by far the best record of any NHL team in back-ends during this stretch.

Trotz this morning said everyone’s available (other than Semyon Varlamov), and he’d chat with Ilya Sorokin to see if he’s ready to go back-to-back. To me that means last night’s shutout man is in net.

‘I’m All About Process’

Here’s the rest of Trotz’s availability, where he was also asked about Robin Lehner, the guy in the opposite crease whose career turned around on Long Island, and Trotz compared a “broken” Lehner at the time to a “broken” franchise in the wake of a departure by a former captain:

The Knights are starting Lehner, they’re without Mark Stone and Alex Martinez among others, and they’ve lost three in a row. The game is late on a Sunday, but the stakes are high for both teams.