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Islanders at Panthers preview

New York goes for season sweep of Florida with Greiss facing Bobrovsky

by Alain Poupart / Independent Correspondent

ISLANDERS (20-7-2) at PANTHERS (15-10-5)

7 p.m. ET; FS-F, MSG+, NHL.TV


The Game

The New York Islanders will look to complete a season sweep of the Florida Panthers when they meet at BB&T Center on Thursday.

The Islanders, 4-2-0 in their past six games, won 3-2 in a shootout at Nassau Coliseum on Oct. 12 and 2-1 at Barclays Center on Nov. 9.

Goalie Thomas Greiss will start for New York; he's 1-3-0 with a 2.84 goals-against average and .917 save percentage in his past four starts after winning his previous eight starts. 

The Panthers look for their fourth victory in six games (3-2-0) following a three-game losing streak. Goalie Sergei Bobrovsky will make his fourth consecutive start after stopping 109 of 113 shots against the Columbus Blue Jackets (4-1 win on Saturday), San Jose Sharks (5-1 win on Sunday) and Tampa Bay Lightning (2-1 loss on Tuesday).


Players to watch

Islanders forward Josh Bailey has seven points (one goal, six assists) in his past six games.

Panthers forward Jonathan Huberdeau has six points (one goal, five assists) in a four-game point streak.


They said it

"Both Florida teams have outstanding special teams. [The Panthers have] got some high-end guys. We can't lose the special teams war; that's a big advantage for them. Five-on-five we can play with anybody." -- Islanders coach Barry Trotz

"He's been unbelievable. He's absolutely stood on his head. We kind of let him down the other night against Tampa [Bay]. He did a great job behind us, but we're looking to build on his big performances so far." -- Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad on goalie Sergei Bobrovsky


Islanders projected lineup

Ross Johnston -- Mathew Barzal -- Josh Bailey

Anthony Beauvillier -- Brock Nelson -- Michael Dal Colle

Anders Lee -- Derick Brassard -- Jordan Eberle

Matt Martin -- Casey Cizikas -- Cal Clutterbuck

Noah Dobson -- Johnny Boychuk

Adam Pelech -- Ryan Pulock

Devon Toews -- Scott Mayfield

Thomas Greiss

Semyon Varlamov

Scratched: Leo Komarov

Injured: Nick Leddy (lower body)


Panthers projected lineup

Jonathan Huberdeau -- Aleksander Barkov -- Evgenii Dadonov

Mike Hoffman -- Vincent Trocheck -- Brett Connolly

Frank Vatrano -- Noel Acciari -- Denis Malgin

Dominic Toninato -- Brian Boyle -- Colton Sceviour

Keith Yandle -- Aaron Ekblad

MacKenzie Weegar -- Anton Stralman

Mark Pysyk -- Josh Brown

Sergei Bobrovsky

Chris Driedger

Scratched: Mike Matheson

Injured: Jayce Hawryluk (upper body)


Status report

Leddy practiced Wednesday and took part in the morning skate Thursday but will miss a second consecutive game. Trotz said Leddy was "progressing quite well." … Hawryluk, a center, was assigned to Springfield of the American Hockey League on a conditioning loan Monday. … Malgin will return to the lineup after being a healthy scratch the past three games. He will replace forward Aleksi Saarela, who was loaned to Springfield on Monday. … Matheson will be a healthy scratch for the first time this season.


Stat pack

The Islanders are 18-0-1 when scoring three or more goals. … New York has been outshot in each of its past seven games. … Florida has been assessed the fewest penalties (88) and fewest penalty minutes (204) in the NHL. … Barkov has seven points (three goals, four assists) in his past six games.

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