Goaltender Rick DiPietro
is out of the New York Islanders
' lineup again -- this time after he was hurt in practice.
DiPietro, who served as the backup to goalie Al Montoya
in New York's first two regular-season games, was scratched against Tampa Bay on Thursday night -- one day after he was struck in the mask by a shot fired by new teammate Brian Rolston
. Montoya started against the Lightning with Evgeni Nabokov
serving as the backup for the first time since he joined the Islanders.
DiPietro has been plagued by injuries -- including a series of concussions -- during the last several years and was being evaluated Thursday to see if he had another. The 30-year-old, in the sixth season of a 15-year contract with the Islanders, has played just 39 games in the past three seasons due to a variety of injuries.
DiPietro was sidelined for several weeks last season because of broken bones in his face caused by a punch from Pittsburgh goalie Brent Johnson
on Feb. 2. The broken bones and swelling in his knee kept him out of action until March 19. He played in five games after returning, giving him 26 for the season after playing just 13 in the previous two seasons due to knee and hip injuries.
Islanders coach Jack Capuano
was hopeful that DiPietro hadn't sustained another concussion.
"He said he felt pretty good," Capuano said. "I saw him when he had a concussion before and he looks much better now."