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Isles Day to Day: Clutterbuck Misses Practice, Series Shifts to Raleigh

Cal Clutterbuck is day to day, but will travel to Raleigh, as the Isles prep to dig out of an 0-2 hole

by Cory Wright NYIslanders / New York Islanders

Cal Clutterbuck missed Tuesday's practice and is officially day to day, according to Head Coach Barry Trotz. Clutterbuck, who was helped off the ice by Matt Martin at the conclusion of Game 2, will make the trip to Raleigh with the team. 

"We'll just see where we are tomorrow morning," Trotz said. "He's coming on the trip and doing what he needs to do." 

If Clutterbuck can't go for Game 3, Michael Dal Colle will likely draw into the lineup. Dal Colle, who had seven points (3G, 4A) in 28 game this season, last played on April 4 and if he draws into the lineup, he'll make his playoff debut. 

"You dream of that as a kid to play in the Stanley Cup playoffs," Dal Colle said on Tuesday. "If and when that time comes you have to stay ready and that's what I've been doing for these past two or three weeks. Staying in shape, staying ready and if that opportunity comes, be as ready as possible."

Video: Practice Update 4/30: Barry Trotz

Dal Colle practiced with Josh Bailey and Brock Nelson on Tuesday, with Tom Kuhnhackl taking Clutterbuck's spot alongside Matt Martin and Casey Cizikas. The rookie, whose biggest playoff experience is winning the 2015 Memorial Cup, said he's been soaking in his surroundings during his first trip to the NHL playoffs. 

"You learn a lot of stuff, kind of a different pace and a different atmosphere, obviously this is my first taste of it, so it's been a fun experience so far," Dal Colle said.

Trotz said he's not worried about Dal Colle's layoff, should he play, saying he's seen players step into the playoffs after missing time and contributing. 

"He's been a player who has worked hard and we have some character people that aren't playing right now and they compete and that's really good for Michael and that group," Trotz said. "I think he'll be ready. I really do."

Video: Practice Update 4/30: Nick Leddy


Down 0-2 to the Carolina Hurricanes, the New York Islanders are experiencing adversity for the first time in the Stanley Cup playoffs and see it as a test for their group.

"We respond to the adversity that we've faced before, this is probably the biggest test we've had," captain Anders Lee said. "It's a test of character, a test of the people in this room and how we respond, not just mentally but physically. Our engagement, it's all the little things that make us who we are and we've gotten to this point because of all those little things. We just have to re-incorporate them as much as possible." 

After a four-game sweep over Pittsburgh, some hardship was bound to happen on the Islanders playoff run. Barry Trotz, whose Washington Capitals dropped two home games to the Columbus Blue Jackets in last year's first round, is no stranger to it. 

In the fight that is the Stanley Cup playoffs, the Islanders coach wants to see how his team responds to their first knockdown. 

"Someone punches you in the nose a little bit to wake you up and get you a little bit mad. I think we're a little bit angry and ready to go," Trotz said. 

Trotz said the Isles have played "well enough to maybe be up 2-0," but "poor enough to be down 2-0" in the first two games of their series against the Hurricanes. 

Video: Practice Update 4/30: Anders Lee

The well enough is holding the Hurricanes to three goals over two games, while the poor enough is only scoring one of their one. The Isles had plenty of chances - and posts - in Game 2, but could not rally after the Hurricanes scored a pair of goals 48 seconds apart to take a 2-1 lead. 

"You have to keep believing, keep doing the right things and keep the process going. When you start getting away from everything that you do well, then you get nothing accomplished," Trotz said. "We had a ton of chances last game and if you get games on chances and shots, when we won't need that scoreboard. There's only one thing that matters, it's how many goals did you get. We haven't scored enough for Robin. We've given up three goals in two games and we're down 0-2."

The plan is to even up the series with a pair of wins in Carolina and the Isles are heading into the eye of the storm - PNC Arena - on Wednesday night. The Hurricanes' arena is said to have a Coliseum-eqsue vibe during the 2019 playoffs, right down to the pre-game tailgate, but as rowdy as Carolina has been in their first playoff since 2009, the Isles say they aren't fazed by the hostile environment. 

Video: Practice Update 4/30: Scott Mayfield

"As an athlete, playing in front of thousands of people it gets your blood going," Casey Cizikas said. "It gets you going. When they cheer, it doesn't matter if they're cheering for you or the other team, it gets you going, you want to play and compete."

The Isles were 24-14-3 on the road this season, including 2-0-0 at PNC Arena, albeit back in October.  

"We are very comfortable on the road, it hasn't bothered us at all," Trotz said. "I think sometimes on the road you can get a little more focused believe it or not, it's you against the world. Some teams are better that way, some teams aren't. We've been pretty even keel all year, home and away. We know we have a big task in front of us and it starts tomorrow night."

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