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Islanders Gameday News: Just how magical can this April be?

With the Islanders starting a tough stretch against the Dallas Stars tonight, I hope that the answer is “infinitely.”

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Dallas Stars v New York Islanders
This line is coming off a big afternoon.
Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The New York Islanders have the faintest of playoff hopes still remaining, and they’ll try to tick up the percentage with some good work on the road against the Dallas Stars. They’re in the central time zone, so it’s an 8:30 p.m. ET puck drop.

Their good work over the past week—combined with some help from the Carolina Hurricanes and Minnesota Wild blowing out the Washington Capitals in two consecutive home games—meant that their percentage reached a whole number instead of decimals less than one. Washington hasn’t swung the door wide open, but they have left it cracked.

It’s still going to take a lot of magic, but something inside me says that the Isles can at least make interesting that home-and-home against the Caps in the season’s final week.

First Islander Goal picks go here.

Islanders News

  • Some keys to tonight’s game include watching out for Jason Robertson and winning. [Islanders]
  • The Islanders returned Cory Schneider to Bridgeport, which means that Ilya Sorokin is healthy enough to dress tonight. [Isles DTD]
  • However, I would guess that Semyon Varlamov goes tonight. Varlamov was named the NHL’s Third Star of the Week for his performance last week: three wins, a .951 save percentage, and a shutout on a back-to-back. [Islanders]
  • Sunday’s results—another Isles regulation and another Caps regulation loss—has even Andrew Gross noting that the Islanders still have a chance. Also, Sunday may have been Andy Greene’s final game at Prudential Center. [Newsday]
  • Barry Trotz described Oliver Wahlstrom’s hit on Jack Hughes as clean and said that P.K. Subban was lucky that he got tossed from the game. [Newsday]
  • Schneider had started to doubt that he would ever get a chance to play another NHL game, but it was quite the reward after battling through injuries and personal tragedy. [The Athletic]
  • Mike and Dan had four wins to discuss, as well as the same dream that we all have. [Islanders Anxiety]
  • Some folks saw a rumor on Twitter about Mike Bossy entering palliative care and even some that said he had already passed, and a couple of outlets—The Hockey News, Spittin’ Chiclets, and Hockey Night in Canada chief among them—ran with the story, publishing pieces assuming they were true (and before you jump down my throat for including it in Sunday’s bits, I had seen tweets saying that his family announced it, and I made no claims about its truth). Then the Bossy family reached out and corrected them. In other words, listen to Peter. (I should, too.)

Elsewhere

Last night’s NHL scores include the Toronto Maple Leafs riding Auston Matthews’ hat trick to a win over the Tampa Bay Lightning in a potential first-round preview.

  • After staying relatively healthy all season, the Calgary Flames are dealing with some injuries at the worst time of the year. But that’s hockey, and every team deals with them. [Sportsnet]
  • The Ottawa Senators gave a heartfelt tribute to their late former owner, Eugene Melnyk, and went out and won that game. Consider it a new chapter in their franchise. [Sportsnet]
  • The article we’ve all been waiting for: Who gets the Boston Bruins’ no. 6 defense slot: Mike Reilly or Connor Clifton? [The Athletic]
  • Future first-ballot Hall-of-Famer Marián Hossa on Thursday will sign a one-day contract with the Chicago Blackhawks so that he can retire with them. [The Athletic]
  • Long read: Erik Karlsson has bounced back this season after a couple of years where it looked like injuries had caught up to him. He is still chasing greatness and a Stanley Cup. [Sportsnet]