Anders Lee will make his preseason debut tonight, New York Islanders head coach Barry Trotz confirmed ahead of the game.
Lee will play with Kyle Palmieri and Mathew Barzal when the puck drops against the Philadelphia Flyers. It will be the first time that the Islanders showcase what is expected to be their top line for the start of the season.
Anders Lee and Barzal haven’t skated with one another since March 11, when Lee suffered a season-ending ACL injury that required surgery. The Islander captain had been skating without any restrictions during training camp, but Trotz had been playing it safe by keeping him out of the first three preseason games.
Tonight marks the start of the final three exhibition games that New York will play before their season opener on Oct. 14.
“He’s excited about getting in,” Trotz said. “He’s confident that he’s ready to go. That’s all good news for us.”
The Islanders have been using different players during the preseason to play alongside Barzal. On Saturday, Kieffer Bellows was paired with Barzal and Palmieri in the team’s 2-1 loss to New Jersey.
Bellows scored the Islanders’ only goal off a pass from Barzal in the first period of the game.