The newest Islanders COVID updates came late in the afternoon, with a bare-bones update from GM Lou Lamoriello:
Anthony Beauvillier has come off the COVID list, with the test that took him out of the opener now deemed to be a false positive. But the bad news is Kieffer Bellows is the latest to join the COVID protocol that already includes Josh Bailey, Anders Lee, Adam Pelech, Andy Greene and Ross Johnston.
All of this raises questions about NHL protocol — and the menacing and changing path of the virus, as we enter winter and perhaps yet another adaptation to how to handle things. But to recap: The Isles played back-to-back games in Florida, losing Bailey to protocol for the second one, then having Lee and Johnston test positive back home, followed by Pelech, Greene, Beauvillier the next day, and now Bellows (who played last night) today. They play again Wednesday vs. the Rangers.
Lamoriello said until they are cleared to play, the team would not be reporting any symptoms or status for COVID-positive players, consistent with his regime’s You Don’t Need To Know Squat approach to unavailable players who do not have season-ending causes. At one point there were reports that Anatolii Golyshev might be the latest recall — he was not in Bridgeport’s lineup today — but that turned out not to be necessary.
Lou Lamoriello Pregame Availability pic.twitter.com/afZXJMyqmq— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) November 21, 2021
Lamoriello also praised the four AHL callups who stepped in on short notice for the opener. Some of them, in particular Robin Salo, may have a long future here (my words, not his...duh).
The 12-6-1 Leafs arrive for Game 2 of the UBS Arena era in good shape, though coming off a 2-0 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins last night. As noted in our morning overview, they’ll start rookie Joseph Woll in goal, who should be opposite Ilya Sorokin.
Anyway, here we go. Record is 5-7-2 thanks to the current five-game losing streak. Here’s hoping for another good effort from the skeleton crew but with a better result for the home fans.