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Bailey Recalled and Back with Confidence

by Dyan LeBourdais / New York Islanders
After being assigned to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Nov. 24, Josh Bailey was recalled today and will be in the lineup tonight when the Islanders take on Steven Stamkos and the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Bailey knows that the organization did what they felt was best, and took full advantage of his opportunity to regain some confidence. In 11 games with the Sound Tigers, Bailey posted 17 points (six goals, 11 assists), while helping the team to a 7-2-0-2 record over the course.

“To be honest, I just tried to get the game I had in junior,” Bailey said. “I wanted to play the way that got me drafted here and I think I did that. I was fortunate enough to play with some good players and play a lot of minutes and play a lot of power play. It seemed to pay off, so I think it felt good just getting that swagger back. It was good.”

And the coaching staff have all the confidence that Bailey took the right approach to the situation and learned a lot while he was with the Sound Tigers.

“He’s done everything that the organization has asked him to do,” Capuano said.

Capuano added, “After watching some film and after watching him play in Bridgeport, I want to see the game that Josh played in Bridgeport and the American Hockey League to carry over right now as he comes back to our hockey club. He played with a ton of confidence and that’s what we want Josh to do.”

Even though Bailey knew that he wasn’t playing to the best of his abilities before he was assigned to the Sound Tigers, he said that he was surprised by the decision. Although, he didn’t have a lot of time to dwell about it because he had a game to play that same night.

Bailey added, “I obviously didn’t expect that to happen. With the way things were going, I thought maybe a game in the stands or two, but I think it all paid off and you just have to make the most of it when stuff like that happens.”

Now that he’s back, the 21-year-old was happy to see his teammates.

“It was good to see all the guys this morning coming in to the rink. I hadn’t seen them in a little while. I talked to some of them, but it was a good feeling getting back in with the guys that I’ve grown up with these last few years and the new guys we added this year. It was definitely exciting coming back to the rink this morning.”

As for Wednesday night’s matchup with the Tampa Bay Lightning, Bailey could play a variety of different positions.

“He could play center, he could play on the wing, but he’ll be moved around a little bit obviously with Matty Martin out,” Capuano said. “We’ll just see how the flow of the game goes.”
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