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Morning Skate Updates: 3/13/15

by Cory Wright / New York Islanders

Nielsen Out: Frans Nielsen will miss tonight’s game against the Senators. Head Coach Jack Capuano said the Islanders’ center is taking a maintenance day.

He hasn’t skated since Tuesday. He’ll be back in here shortly. But to me, just want to make sure we rest him appropriately. Today’s a good time with back to back games.

Grabner In, Strome at Center:
Michael Grabner draws back into the lineup tonight for Nielsen. Ryan Strome will take over Nielsen’s duties at center.

Halak Starts:
Jaroslav Halak will start in goal tonight for the Islanders. Halak is 6-3-1 in his last 10 games and is 2-0-0 against the Senators this season.

12 josh bailey 91 John Tavares 21 Kyle Okposo
18 ryan strome 86 Nikolay Kulemin
27 Anders Lee
29 Brock Nelson 26 Tyler Kennedy
17 Matt Martin
53 Casey Cizikas 15 Cal clutterbuck

The Islanders play the Senators tonight at 7 p.m. The game can be seen on MSG+.

Boychuk Signs: Johnny Boychuk signed a seven-year contract extension with the Islanders Thursday.

Boychuk on signing: I knew it was going to get done, it was just a matter of time. We’re a good team, a younger team. I know we’re going to be good for a long time. It was an easy decision… You can see if you could get more, but you have to look at where you fit in, how the team is and your happiness as well.

Boychuk on being a throwback player: It means doing whatever it takes for the team to win. Whether it’s blocking shots, scoring, playing good defense, whatever the team needs to win, I want to do that.

Capuano on Boychuk:
There were a few people that doubted when the trade was made that he was gonna stay here for a long time. We have a good bunch of guys, he knows that. He’s a great leader, a throwback kind of guy, he’s great in the room and his production has been great for us.

Grabner on Boychuk and Leddy signings:
They come in here, see what it’s like, see the guys and the atmosphere to play here. They like it. We are obviously glad to have them. They are two great guys in the locker room and two great hockey players. It’s nice to have them here for a long time.

Lee vs. Hoffman:
The NHL’s two leading rookie goal scorers go toe-to-toe tonight. Hoffman leads all freshmen with 24 goals, while Lee is one behind him. Lee brings a six-game point streak (three goals, three assists) into tonight’s action.

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