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Islanders without Grabovski against Predators

Forward sent home with undisclosed injury; Greiss to start for New York

by Robby Stanley / Correspondent

ISLANDERS (38-21-9) at PREDATORS (35-22-13)

TV: 8 p.m. ET; MSG+, FS-TN, NHL.TV

NASHVILLE -- The New York Islanders will be without forward Mikhail Grabovski against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena on Thursday.

Islanders coach Jack Capuano announced Thursday that Grabovski was sent home with an undisclosed injury. Grabovski played 17:01 for the Islanders in a 2-1 shootout loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday.


"He played 17-plus minutes in Pittsburgh, and I thought he played pretty well to be honest with you," Capuano said. "Just came to the medical people the following day, had a couple of issues that he conversed with them about and we decided to send him back and get him checked up."

Health is an issue for the Islanders heading into the game against the Predators. Capuano said he has not yet determined what the lineup will be with the group of forwards.

"For me, it's just seeing where we're at health-wise, and then we can determine our centermen and our wingers and what balance we're going to have in our attack here tonight," Capuano said. "Pretty sure I know what we're going to do on the back end, I know what we're doing in goal, but right now up front we don't know."

Thomas Greiss will start in goal for the Islanders after Jean-Francois Berube faced the Penguins.

The Predators won 3-2 against the Edmonton Oilers on Monday to close out a five-game road trip. They went 3-1-1 on the trip and are feeling good about their game.

"We're fighting for everything we can get," Predators forward Mike Fisher said. "A couple of those games, we didn't really play our best. We still found a way to get a point or two, and that's a good sign. We've been playing well and competing, especially on the road. We've had a tough road schedule and managed to play well, and we've got to make sure now that we're more at home that we're focused and ready to play at home."

Here are the projected lineups:

Josh Bailey - John Tavares - Kyle Okposo
Nikolay Kulemin - Frans Nielsen - Ryan Strome
Anders Lee - Brock Nelson - Steve Bernier
Matt Martin - Casey Cizikas - Cal Clutterbuck

Nick Leddy - Johnny Boychuk
Calvin de Haan - Travis Hamonic
Thomas Hickey - Brian Strait

Thomas Greiss
Jean-Francois Berube

Injured: Jaroslav Halak (groin), Marek Zidlicky (upper body), Adam Pelech (upper body), Mikhail Grabovski (undisclosed)
Scratched: Eric Boulton, Shane Prince, Ryan Pulock

Calle Jarnkrok - Ryan Johansen - James Neal
Filip Forsberg - Mike Ribeiro - Craig Smith
Miikka Salomaki - Mike Fisher - Viktor Arvidsson
Colin Wilson - Colton Sissons - Austin Watson

Roman Josi - Shea Weber
Mattias Ekholm - Ryan Ellis
Anthony Bitetto - Barret Jackman

Pekka Rinne
Carter Hutton

Injured: Eric Nystrom (broken foot), Paul Gaustad (upper body), Gabriel Bourque (upper body)
Scratched: Petter Granberg

Status report: The Predators held an optional morning skate. … Bourque and Nystrom were sent to the Milwaukee Admirals of the American Hockey League on long-term injury loan on Wednesday.

Who's hot: Okposo has two goals in the past two games and is tied for the Islanders lead with 55 points. …  Neal had a hat trick against the Oilers and has 26 goals on the season.

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