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Islanders' Okposo game-time decision; Bailey returns

by Dan Rosen

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- New York Islanders right wing Kyle Okposo will be a game-time decision Monday because his wife, Danielle, was at the hospital and due to give birth to the couple's first child.

Peter Regin is expected to play on the Islanders' top line with John Tavares and Thomas Vanek if Okposo is unable to go against the Dallas Stars at Nassau Coliseum.

Okposo went to the hospital Sunday night and was still there Monday morning.

"We'll know a little bit more here in a couple of hours," Islanders coach Jack Capuano said after the morning skate. "We knew going in what time she was going to go in. We knew he'd be there all night. Now it just depends on this morning, if things work out well, knock on wood, he gets his proper rest and he can play tonight."

Islanders forward Josh Bailey will return to the lineup after missing four games with an upper-body injury. Capuano said he wants to see Bailey shoot more. He's had 12 games this season in which he didn't register a shot on goal.

"I need to see a guy that is going to get more pucks to the net," Capuano said. "We expect all our guys to play well defensively, but he's gotta be a guy who gets some pucks to the net. There's no question he's gone games where he's got no shots and he's gotta get back to doing that."

Evgeni Nabokov will get the start in net and Matt Donovan will return to the lineup for the first time since Nov. 27. He was recalled from Bridgeport of the American Hockey League last Thursday.

Here is the Islanders' potential lineup for the game Monday:

Thomas Vanek - John Tavares - Kyle Okposo/Peter Regin

Josh Bailey - Frans Nielsen - Brock Nelson

Michael Grabner - Ryan Strome - Cal Clutterbuck

Matt Martin - Casey Cizikas - Eric Boulton

Calvin de Haan - Travis Hamonic

Brian Strait - Andrew MacDonald

Matt Donovan - Thomas Hickey

Evgeni Nabokov

Kevin Poulin

Scratched: Kyle Okposo/Peter Regin, Matt Carkner

Injured: Lubomir Visnovsky (concussion), Radek Martinek (back spasms)


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