The New York Islanders will need to put up a more consistent effort on Saturday if they want to pick up their second win of the season. The Islanders face the Arizona Coyotes in the first game of a back-to-back on Saturday night as the opening leg of their 13-game road trip wraps up.
The Islanders have gotten off to a rough start this season going 1-2-1 in their first four games of the year. New York was outscored 11-4 in the first two games before their offense started to find its footing in their last two games.
The New York Islanders have been on easy street compared to the start that Arizona has had in their first four games, going 0-3-1. Their only point of the season came in a shootout loss to the Buffalo Sabres.
Arizona will go with Karel Vejmelka in net against the Islanders on Saturday, while New York will go with Ilya Sorokin for the fifth consecutive game this season. Sorokin has been filling in as the Isles starter while Semyon Varlamov has been out and has a .901 save percentage and 3.50 goals-against average.
Vejmelka enters the game for his third start of the season and fourth appearance of the year. He has a .908 save percentage and 2.82 goals-against average.
The Islanders should have Jean-Gabriel Pageau back in the lineup on Saturday after he missed Thursday’s loss with a stomach bug. It was the same illness that sidelined Anders Lee earlier in the week. Zach Parise filled in at center and Kieffer Bellows moved to Parise’s spot for the game.
New York Islanders Lines (Projected)
Anders Lee — Mathew Barzal — Kyle Palmieri
Anthony Beauvillier — Brock Nelson — Josh Bailey
Zach Parise — Jean-Gabriel Pageau — Oliver Wahlstrom
Matt Martin — Casey Cizikas — Cal Clutterbuck
Adam Pelech — Scott Mayfield
Zdeno Chara — Ryan Pulock
Andy Greene — Noah Dobson
Arizona Coyotes Lines (Projected)
Lawson Crouse — Travis Boyd — Clayton Keller
Dmitrij Jaskin — Nick Schmaltz — Phil Kessel
Andrew Ladd — Johan Larsson — Ryan Dzingel
Loui Eriksson — Jay Beagle — Christian Fischer
Jakob Chychrun — Anton Stralman
Shayne Gostisbehere — Dysin Mayo
Ilya Lyubushkin — Conor Timmins
Saturday’s game marks Arizona’s final home game in the month of October. They will play their next six games on the road. … Phil Kessel will appear in his 905th consecutive Game on Saturday night against the Islanders. In two games against New York with Arizona, Kessel has recorded a point in each game. … Dysin Mayo became the first Arizona defenseman to score in his NHL debut on Thursday since Tony DeAngelo did so in 2016. He is the eighth defenseman in franchise history to do so. … Zdeno Chara can pass Ray Bourque for sole possession of fourth-most career games played among NHL Defensemen. … Saturday begins the first of 19 sets of back-to-backs the Islanders will play this season. The last time they played that many was the 2009-10 season. … Mathew Barzal is seven games shy of playing in 300 career NHL games.
How to Watch
The game will air locally on MSG+ and stream on MSG Go. On the radio dial, Chris King and Greg Picker will have the call on 98.7 FM ESPN New York, 88.7 FM WRHU and 103.9 FM LI News Radio.