Brock Nelson will miss two-to-four weeks with a lower-body injury, Islanders President and General Manager Lou Lamoriello announced on Tuesday.
Nelson suffered the injury in the first period of Sunday's 3-0 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs, colliding with Jake Muzzin. Nelson leads the Islanders with nine goals and 11 points. The injury snaps Nelson's 316-game ironman streak, which ranks second all-time in Islanders history. The last game Nelson missed was March 14, 2017 vs Carolina.
While Nelson's injury was hockey-related, the Islanders added another player to their COVID-19 list, as defenseman Zdeno Chara was added on Monday. Chara has two assists in 15 games with the Islanders this season with 33 hits - most among Isles d-men - and 15 blocked shots.
Video: Practice 11/23: Lou Lamoriello
In the wake of Nelson and Chara's developments, the Islanders recalled defenseman Thomas Hickey and forward Anatolii Golyshev from Bridgeport. Hickey has one assist in nine games with Bridgeport, but the 32-year-old has 454 NHL games under his belt - all with the Islanders. Golyshev has seven points (5G, 2A) in 13 games with Bridgeport, his first season in North America.
Golyshev, the Islanders' 2016 fourth-round pick (95th overall), was a standout in the KHL, racking up 208 points (103G, 105A) in 366 games. If Golyshev gets into the lineup, the Russian would be making his NHL debut.
Lamoriello said that Josh Bailey, Kieffer Bellows, Andy Greene, Ross Johnston, Anders Lee and Adam Pelech were all still in COVID protocols. Bailey, who has been in quarantine in Florida since Tuesday, Nov. 16, is eligible to return to New York this weekend, per NHL protocols. Andy Andreoff, Grant Hutton, Paul LaDue and Richard Panik were previously recalled in wake of covid-related absences, while Robin Salo was recalled last Thursday after Ryan Pulock suffered a lower-body injury vs the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Lamoriello also added that the team has had talks with the league about the status of upcoming games, but the decision on whether to postpone ultimately rests with the NHL. The Islanders GM said the team is preparing to play on Wednesday night vs the New York Rangers.
"We'll continue to do what we have control of," Lamoriello said. "You can't deal with things that are out of your hands. Certainly these are difficult times, but we will stay focused on the players we have, what our abilities are to replace players, if necessary and stay as positive as we possibly can."