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Islanders at Devils preview

New York goes for season series sweep; New Jersey goalie Schneider returns from abdominal injury

by Mike G. Morreale @mikemorrealeNHL / Correspondent

ISLANDERS (30-16-6) AT DEVILS (20-25-7)

7 p.m. ET; MSG, MSG+, NHL.TV


The Game

Goalie Cory Schneider will make his first start in more than a month and try to get his first NHL victory in more than a year when the New Jersey Devils play the New York Islanders at Prudential Center on Thursday.

Schneider, who last started an NHL game on Dec. 14, 2018, and last won one on Dec. 27, 2017, went 0-5-1 with a 4.66 goals-against average and .852 save percentage in nine games with the Devils this season before missing 17 with an abdominal strain. He played five games in a conditioning stint with Binghamton of the American Hockey League before being recalled by New Jersey on Sunday.

The Islanders, who will try to sweep the four-game season series against the Devils for the first time since 2014-15, are 1-1-2 in their past four games.


Players to watch

Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss is 2-1-1 with a 1.60 GAA and .943 save percentage in his past five games.

Devils forward Marcus Johansson has five points (two goals, three assists) in his past five games.


They said it

"We were thought to be a team that was supposed to finish in the bottom five, so we've played with a chip on our shoulder. It's about finding that extra compete, that extra inch, and it's been a blast winning games. When you get a taste of that winning atmosphere, you don't want to lose it." -- Islanders center Mathew Barzal

"This is about not trying to tiptoe into this, being ready from the beginning and hopefully have a good start. It's important all of us execute at a higher level and play with the detail that we know we can, and we need to win." -- Devils goalie Cory Schneider


Islanders projected lineup

Anders Lee -- Brock Nelson -- Jordan Eberle

Michael Dal Colle -- Mathew Barzal -- Josh Bailey

Anthony Beauvillier -- Valtteri Filppula - Leo Komarov

Matt Martin -- Casey Cizikas -- Cal Clutterbuck

Nick Leddy -- Johnny Boychuk

Adam Pelech -- Ryan Pulock

Devon Toews -- Scott Mayfield

Thomas Greiss

Robin Lehner

Scratched: Tom Kuhnhackl, Luca Sbisa, Ross Johnston

Injured: Andrew Ladd (lower body), Thomas Hickey (upper body)


Devils projected lineup

Marcus Johansson -- Nico Hischier -- Kyle Palmieri

Miles Wood -- Travis Zajac -- Blake Coleman

Jesper Bratt -- Pavel Zacha -- Drew Stafford

Brett Seney -- Kevin Rooney -- Kurtis Gabriel

Andy Greene -- Damon Severson

Will Butcher -- Ben Lovejoy

Mirco Mueller -- Eric Gryba

Cory Schneider

Keith Kinkaid

Scratched: Egor Yakovlev, Steven Santini

Injured: Taylor Hall (lower body), Sami Vatanen (concussion), Joey Anderson (ankle), Stefan Noesen (lower body)


Status report

Dal Colle was moved up to the second line with Barzal and Bailey at practice on Wednesday. Beauvillier skated with Filppula and Komarov. ... Lovejoy returns after missing six games with an upper-body injury.


Stat pack

Greiss has not allowed a goal in 146:48, including shutouts against the Washington Capitals (2-0 win on Jan. 18) and Tampa Bay Lightning (1-0 shootout loss on Feb. 1) in his past two starts. ... Hischier has four points (three goals, one assist) in his past three games.

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