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Morning Skate Updates: 10/28/14

by Cory Wright / New York Islanders


Halak Starts: Jaroslav Halak will start tonight for the Islanders in goal. Halak sat the previous two games in favor of Chad Johnson, but is back in. The Islanders goaltender is 3-2-0 in five games this season.

Capuano on Halak: He’s had a great week. He’s got a great attitude, he’s real positive and he’s a team guy. He’s out early every day and stays late after practice. I expect a real solid game from him tonight.

Same Lineup: The Islanders are icing the same 18 skaters from Saturday’s win.

Projected Lines:
89 Cory Conacher 91 John Tavares 21 Kyle Okposo
84 Mikhail grabovski 51 Frans Nielsen 86 Nikolay Kulemin
27 Anders Lee 29 Brock Nelson 18 Ryan Strome
17 Matt Martin 53 Casey Cizikas 15 Cal Clutterbuck

Where and When:
Tonight's game is on MSG Plus at 7 p.m with Visa Islanders Gamenight starting at 6:30 p.m. Click here for channel listings. Buy tickets here.

When in Strome: Ryan Strome has seven assists this season playing primarily with Brock Nelson. Head Coach Jack Capuano praised Strome's defensive game and said it's one of the reasons for his development.

Strome: Each game I’ve felt better, but I don’t like to judge my game on points. You can get points and not play well. The team is playing well and I think for our line, just trying to contribute where we can and take the pressure off those top guys for the scoring, play solid defensively and be plus players is the most important things for us.


Hamonic, Bailey Out: Travis Hamonic (day-to-day, upper body) and Josh Bailey (hand) are both out of tonight’s contest. Hamonic will miss his third straight game, while Bailey will sit out his second consecutive contest.

But They’ll Make the Trip:
Hamonic and Bailey will accompany the Islanders on their upcoming western road trip.

Projected Defense Pairings:
2 Nick Leddy 55 Johnny Boychuk
14 Thomas Hickey 11 lubomir visnovsky
44 calvin de haan 37 brian strait

They Said It:

Thomas Hickey and Matt Martin give their thoughts on going up against 6'5, 260 lbs. Dustin Byfuglien, one of the biggest players in the league.

Thomas Hickey: He’s a smart guy, he’s going to wait for you to go into the corner and then he’s going to hit you. That’s his game and he’s good at it. Some guys have the luxury of pulling up and letting him go get it, but not too many defensemen get that green light I think you just have to go in and if I’m going to take a hit from a big guy, I’m jumping up as soon as he hits me and I’m going to let the glass absorb some of it.

Matt Martin: You just have to by physical on everyone. Obviously Buff’s a big boy and he’s a hard guy to hit and knock around, but you still have to put your body on him and get in his way, so he can’t jump up in the rush and take pucks to the net. I think we have to be physical on everyone over there, especially guys like Enstrom and their skill guys who don’t like to be hit too much.

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