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New York Islanders

NYHN Daily: Islanders Get a Win in Return, COVID-19 Update & More

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New York Islanders

The New York Islanders picked up a 4-1 over the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday night in their first game back. The Islanders saw young players elevate their game to help the Islanders secure two points, while Varlamov stood tall yet again. Ahead of the contest with Buffalo, the Islanders activated a few players from COVID-19 protocol.

These stories and more in today’s daily links!

Keeping it ON the Island

The New York Islanders defeated the Buffalo Sabres by a score of 4-1 on Thursday night. The win moves the Islanders to 9-12-6 on the season and 3-5-3 on UBS Arena ice this season. Here’s how it happened.  (NYI Hockey Now)

In their first game in 10 days, the Islanders saw youngsters step up in a big way, Semyon Varlamov continued his strong play and the Islanders continued to keep their foot on the gas. Here are the takeaways from the win. (NYI Hockey Now)

The New York Islanders have announced that Cal Clutterbuck, Matt Martin, Zach Parise and Robin Salo have been removed from COVID-19 protocol. Defenseman Sebastian Aho is now in COVID-19 protocol. Other roster moves have been made as well. (NYI Hockey Now)

Prior to the game against Buffalo, Stefen Rosner picked Islanders forward Mat Barzal as the player to watch. Barzal entered the contest riding a six-game point streak and scored the Goal of the Year against the Sabres last season. (NYI Hockey Now)

Around the National Hockey Now Boards

It’s been a long, strange year for the Boston Bruins, and they still have a whopping 56 games to play as hit a Jan. 1 date that usually marks close to the midpoint of the regular season. They’re just three points out of a playoff spot behind the Detroit Red Wings with five games in hand and stand in relatively good shape overall when it comes to the postseason. (Boston Hockey Now)

With COVID opposition and closed arenas in Canada, the Pittsburgh Penguins have played just 30 games this season. The last time they hit the ice was Dec. 17, when they beat the New Jersey Devils 3-2 for their seventh straight win. It almost seems like last season, doesn’t it? (Pittsburgh Hockey Now)

The Florida Panthers saved their biggest offensive output for their final game of the 2021 calendar year Thursday night against the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Panthers had fans chanting “We want 10!” for the final seven minutes after Sasha Barkov got a shorthanded goal for Florida’s ninth goal of the night. (Florida Hockey Now)

The latest opportunity for Robby Fabbri to display his value to the Detroit Red Wings was scuttled on Thursday. However, in this case, that was good news for the team. Lucas Raymond is out of COVID-19 protocol and that means he’ll be able to take up his usual slot on the right wing of Detroit’s top forward line with captain Dylan Larkin and Tyler Bertuzzi for Friday’s game against the Washington Capitals. Had Raymond not been good to go, Fabbri was the one who would’ve been going into his spot. (Detroit Hockey Now)

What a weird, strange trip it has been for the Montreal Canadiens. A calendar year that started with repeated beatdowns of the Vancouver Canucks peaked with an impromptu run to the Stanley Cup Final. And then a meltdown of historic proportions. How’s that for peaks and valleys. From the top of Mount Everest to the crushing depths of the Marianas Trench. (Montreal Hockey Now)

Vegas Golden Knights star forward Max Pacioretty has undergone successful wrist surgery. The 33-year old forward is expected to be out indefinitely for the Golden Knights heading forwards. He joins Mark Stone, Robin Lehner, Nolan Patrick, Alec Martinez, Jack Eichel, Brett Howden, and Peter DeBoer as unavailable members of the Golden Knights organization. (Vegas Hockey Now)

In the latest edition of Locked On Sharks, Kyle and JD review the San Jose Sharks’ 3-2 overtime win over the Philadelphia Flyers. We review some of Bob Boughner’s choices including benching Timo Meier to end the game and overtime, Erik Karlsson’s phenomenal play (10:00), and Logan Couture’s work on the penalty kill (13:00). We finish by discussing our overall thoughts of the game including the struggling power play (18:00) and give out our three fries of the week (22:00). (San Jose Hockey Now)

The Vancouver Canucks have finally lost a game with Bruce Boudreau behind the net. But they got a point, as they fell 2-1 in a shootout to the Los Angeles Kings. Netminder Jaroslav Halak has not been given a ton of goals to work with this season, but has done his job in keeping his team in it night in and night out. Here’s more from the loss. (Vancouver Hockey Now)

Earlier in the day, Mark Giordano talked about the competitive atmosphere he expected on the ice against his former team. The last Calgary Flames captain nailed it. He also hit the back of the net to open the scoring against the team he spent parts of 15 seasons with as an unrestricted free agent signing who earned his way into the ultimate leadership role. But the Flames defeated the Seattle Kraken 6-4 to spoil his return. (Calgary Hockey Now)

League Business

The NHL announced that goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury has won the Unmasked Goaltender of the Year Award. While winning his first Vezina played a part, it was his ability to handle being dealt to Chicago and dealing with the obstacles that came with that, that made him the winner. He tweaked his game just a bit after a rough start, which allowed him to be more successful. Not many goaltenders at age 37 are willing to change their game, especially after winning the Vezina. (NHL)

On Thursday, the Philadelphia Flyers placed forward Sean Couturier on injured reserve due to an upper-body injury. He is considered week-to-week. (TSN)

The Minnesota Wild have signed head coach Dean Evason to an extension as well as his coaching staff. Since Evason took over in February of 2020, the Wild have played to a 62-29-7 record. They currently sit in second place in the Central Division. (TSN)