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Game Preview: Islanders at Sharks

Eberle's status up in the air as Islanders visit Sharks (10:30 p.m., MSG+ MSG GO)

by Cory Wright WrightsWay / New York Islanders

NEW YORK ISLANDERS (1-2-1) AT SAN JOSE SHARKS (1-2-0) 

10:30 P.M. ET 

TV: MSG+ MSG GO

RADIO: 88.7FM - WRHU, 660AM and 101.9FM - WFAN

GAME NOTES MORNING SKATE UPDATES


The Islanders kick off a back-to-back this weekend with a tilt against the San Jose Sharks on Saturday night (10:30 p.m., MSG+, MSG GO). 

They may be without Jordan Eberle, who missed Friday's practice after taking a big hit during practice on Thursday. Head Coach Doug Weight didn't have an update on Eberle's condition, but said he doesn't think it's a long-term issue and there's a chance he could play on Saturday. 

"I don't know what the prognosis is, I don't think it's anything long term," Weight said. "It could certainly be a couple of days, or he could be in tomorrow. We'll find out later today."

LINEUP NOTES:

UPDATE: Greiss in goal, the rest of the lineup will be announced closer to gametime. Weight is waiting to see the health of Jordan Eberle and Cal Clutterbuck. The Islanders' coach doesn't anticipate making changes to his defense corps. Read more from the Islanders morning skate. 

If Eberle can't go, expect to see Josh Bailey reunited with John Tavares and Anders Lee. The Lee-Tavares-Bailey trio was the Islanders' top line last season and both Bailey (56 points) and Lee (34 goals) had career years flanking the captain. 

"Hopefully Ebs is in good shape and ready to play, but obviously I've played with those two guys quite a bit in the past, so it really won't be any adjustment," Bailey said.

Mathew Barzal practiced with the top power-play unit on Friday and could be back with the top unit if Eberle is out. 

Cal Clutterbuck will likely return to the lineup after missing three games with a lower-body injury. Clutterbuck skated with his usual line mates Casey Cizikas and Nikolay Kulemin on Friday. 

"I would expect to see Clutterbuck in the lineup," Weight said. "Last year was a rough year for Cal getting injured. I'm glad he took a couple of extra days because this is one of those nagging areas and I need him to be not in-and-out [of the lineup], but that stellar piece of our lineup that he was two years ago. The only way he can do that is to be healthy, so I'm excited that he's feeling good."

Thomas Greiss will start in goal as the Islanders continue to alternate their two goalies. The former-Shark is 0-1-1 to start the season and is coming off a 35-save performance in a 3-2 shootout loss to St. Louis on Monday. 

ISLANDERS PROJECTED LINES:

FORWARDS
LEFT WING CENTER  RIGHT WING
ANDERS LEE JOHN TAVARES JOSH BAILEY
ANDREW LADD BROCK NELSON JOSH HO-SANG
ANTHONY BEAUVILLIER MATHEW BARZAL JASON CHIMERA
NIKOLAY KULEMIN CASEY CIZIKAS CAL CLUTTERBUCK
DEFENSE
NICK LEDDY JOHNNY BOYCHUK
CALVIN DE HAAN ADAM PELECH
THOMAS HICKEY SCOTT MAYFIELD

 

BY THE NUMBERS:

2 - Games in eight days between the Islanders and Sharks, who will face off again on Oct. 21 at Barclays Center. 

0-15 - on the power play this season. The Islanders have yet to break through with the man advantage in four games to start the season. 

83 - Shots in the past two games for the Islanders. 

499 - Points for Andrew Ladd. The Islanders winger is one point shy of 500. He has two points (1G, 1A) to start the season. 

Tweet from @NYIslanders: The latest updates from today's #Isles practice in San Jose: https://t.co/xCHUOH4CEm pic.twitter.com/PWCygLGbOy

THE OPPOSITION: 

The Sharks won their first game of the season on Thursday night, downing the Buffalo Sabres 3-2 at SAP Center. 

Paul Martin (ankle) was placed on injured reserve by the Sharks on Thursday and will miss Saturday's game. With Martin out, defenseman Joakim Ryan was recalled from the San Jose Barracuda and made his NHL debut against the Sabres. 

Martin's loss is a blow to the Sharks back end, but their back end is always an offensive threat with Brent Burns. The reigning Norris Trophy winner scored a team-high 29 goals and 76 points last season, finishing ninth in league scoring. 

The Sharks are returning a similar roster from last season, save for one notable subtraction, as Patrick Marleau signed with Toronto in free agency after 19 years with San Jose. Marleau is the Sharks all-time leading scorer with 508 goals and 1082 points. 

Brooklyn, NY, native Kevin Labanc leads the Sharks in goals (2) and points (3) to start the season. 

Martin Jones is the likely starter for Saturday's contest. Jones is 1-2-0 to start the season. 

UPDATE: Aaron Dell will start in goal for the Sharks. 

SHARKS PROJECTED LINES:

FORWARDS
LEFT WING CENTER  RIGHT WING
KEVIN LABANC JOE THORNTON JOE PAVELSKI
TOMAS HERTL LOGAN COUTURE MIKKEL BOEDKER
TIMO MEIER CHRIS TIERNEY JOONAS DONSKOI
MELKER KARLSSON RYAN CARPENTER JANNIK HANSEN
DEFENSE
JOAKIM RYAN BRENT BURNS
MARC-EDOUARD VLASIC JUSTIN BRAUN
BRENDEN DILLON TIM HEED
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