No surprises from the New York Islanders’ end before Game 6 as they aim to close out their second-round NHL playoff series with the Boston Bruins. The Isles will use the same lineup of skaters that they’ve used for every game this series. Semyon Varlamov, who’s been in net for every game since Game 1, remains as the starter.
Barry Trotz’s pre-game media session confirmed that approach, so the scrum mostly focused on what the team might’ve learned from last year, how it’s different this year in front of fans instead of the antiseptic bubble, and what the mindset is heading into tonight.
As far as any adjustments to approach compared to Game 5 and the early Bruins blitz, Trotz said a big part is simply avoiding the turnovers and bad decisions that enabled the Bruins to keep the pressure on.
And this didn’t come up again, but whether or not Bruce Cassidy’s complaints have any effect on how things are called, the Islanders can’t expect to score on three consecutive power plays like they did in Game 5, the first time they had that many power play goals in one game under Barry Trotz.
Trotz Pregame Availability pic.twitter.com/t5wnbU2y5N— x - New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) June 9, 2021
Islanders-Bruins Injury Updates: Nothing new
The Isles’ injuries are all pre-existing: Anders Lee has been done for the season, Oliver Wahlstrom and Michael Dal Colle remain day-to-day, and Trotz would be unlikely to change even if the latter two were available.
For the Bruins, Kevan Miller has been out all series and Brandon Carlo has been out the last two games, and no update is expected there. There was some question about whether whatever nagging issues Tuukka Rask is dealing with would keep him out, but few bought it, and Bruce Cassidy confirmed today that Rask would start.
UPDATE: Jake DeBrusk will slide back into the lineup after missing Game 5.
The Other Saints Join the Fun
Of course, Islanders fans are looking for a raucous time. It has the makings of a classic, celebratory night in Nassau Coliseum’s final playoff run. Adding a little spice is the series of Bruce Cassidy comments that drew a fine from the NHL and mockery from us. The NFL New Orleans Saints have joined in on that fun:
Last Chance for Cassidy to Complain?
Since it’s been a topic for some of the less literate — including so much Boston media that pretty much just fans the flames — here are the ref assignments in this series thus far:
1. They have new refs for every game.— Scouting The Refs (@ScoutingTheRefs) June 9, 2021
2. The Game 6 crew worked Game 2.
There is no 'overhaul' here... https://t.co/Ly521jAphz
PSA: Since this is a thing for such stupid reasons... refs by Game in #Isles/Bruins— Habes Without the E (@habermetrics) June 9, 2021
G1: St. Laurent/Charron
G5: St. Laurent/Charron
Don't let the Boston media control this false narrative kthx
Ledecky on What’s Working
Say no more, say no more...:
I asked Jon Ledecky today how the #Isles have had so much success over the past three years. His answer:— Brian Compton (@BComptonNHL) June 9, 2021
1) Lou Lamoriello
2) Barry Trotz
3) An ownership group that stays the heck out of the way.
"We're not talking to Barry & Lou about who you're going to play on the 4th line."