As of now, it appears that tomorrow night’s game between the New York Islanders and New Jersey Devils will go on as scheduled. The Devils’ outbreak seems to be somewhat contained, and Covid has mostly run through the Islanders’ system (though not entirely, as you’ll see below).
But, as most of the last two calendar years have been, everything is a little touch-and-go. So we’ll see if the game happens.
- Head coach Barry Trotz, who just returned from grieving his mother’s passing, is now in Covid protocol and may miss the next two games. [Newsday]
- Ryan Pulock, who recently started skating in his rehab from his foot injury, also entered protocol. [Isles DTD]
- LISTEN: Andrew Gross hosts @IslesGirl3 and Devils reporter Amanda Stein on this latest episode of Island Ice, no. 122. They (may) actually have an upcoming game to discuss, too.
- They’re already putting that New York Times money to use: The Athletic now has NHL Player Cards with data visualizations. Here are the Isles.
- The Islanders’ prospect pool won its race to the bottom. Scott Wheeler ranks them no. 31, ahead of only the expansion Seattle Kraken, who basically have only one draft’s worth of prospects. [The Athletic]
- The B-Isles took five of six points from their recent homestand, and both Otto Koivula and Michael Dal Colle have point streaks of at least five games. [Bridgeport Report]
- Meanwhile, two of the Isles’ cadre of Finnish prospects, Aatu Räty and Eetu Liukas, recorded two-point games last week. Take that, Wheeler! [Prospect Report]
- Something new to look forward to today:
- Evgeni Malkin scored twice in his return to the Penguins lineup. [NHL]
- Potential Jakob Chychrun suitors, and the Edmonton Oilers taking a big run at newly minted UFA Evander Kane, whose decision on where next to play will come within days. [32 Thoughts]
- Jack Eichel took the ice for the first time as a member of the Vegas Golden Knights. [NHL]
- Former Arizona Coyotes GM John Chayka, who was the youngest-ever NHL GM, reveals some of the hard lessons he learned in getting fired. [Sportico]
- In other executive news, the Detroit Red Wings are building a front office of heroes. In addition to GM Steve Yzerman, they now employ VP of Hockey Ops Nick Lidstrom. [WIIM]
- Two former off-ice officials filed a lawsuit in federal court in Florida against the NHL, claiming they were fired in retaliation for calling out two ex-supervisors for their racist behavior. [Sportsnet]
- Next week, the Boston Bruins will raise to the rafters Willie O’Ree’s no. 22. Lightning teammates Pierre-Edouard Bellmare and Mathieu Joseph say that it is “an honor and a message.” [ESPN]