It’s another do or die game for the New York Islanders tonight as they look to stave off elimination and for a Game 7 against the Tampa Bay Lightning in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Puck drop tonight is scheduled for 8 p.m.
As has become the norm during the playoffs, not much is known about the Islanders lineup for Game 6. Trotz said that the Islanders should have a full complement of players to go against Tampa Bay.
“The normal bumps and bruises,” Islanders coach Barry Trotz said. “We’ve got a couple of question marks. As of right now we won’t know anything until warmups.”
The Islanders opted to play 11 forwards and seven defensemen on Tuesday in their double-overtime Game 5 win. Trotz mixed and matched lines during the win and it could be something the Islanders do again in Game 6, especially without Casey Cizikas in the lineup.
“It’s kind of changed the dynamic of our lineup a little bit,” Matt Martin said about the Islanders lineup. “I didn’t mind it at all. (Johnny Boychuk) coming in brought some energy and grit on the back end. … It’s just whatever it takes right now this time of the year.”
The status of Tampa Bay star Brayden Point is still unknown. Head coach Jon Cooper said that Point was a game-time decision.
The Islanders have won both games that Point has not been in the lineup.
“There’s a difference between injured and being hurt,” Cooper said while talking generally and not about Point specifically. “There’s a difference between when you’re fighting through pain on an injury that can’t get any worse. Or you’re fighting through something that if you do one wrong thing this could linger on longer and longer. … Those are what you have to manage.”
Islanders Lineup (Projected)
Anders Lee — Mathew Barzal – Cal Clutterbuck
Anthony Beauvillier — Brock Nelson — Josh Bailey
Matt Martin — Jean-Gabriel Pageau — Jordan Eberle
Leo Komarov — Derick Brassard
Adam Pelech — Ryan Pulock
Devon Toews — Scott Mayfield
Nick Leddy — Andy Greene
Lightning Lineup (Projected)
Ondrej Palat — Anthony Cirelli — Nikita Kucherov
Alex Killorn — Yanni Gourde — Blake Coleman
Barclay Goodrow — Cedric Paquette — Tyler Johnson
Pat Maroon — Carter Verhaeghe
Victor Hedman — Kevin Shattenkirk
Ryan McDonagh — Zach Bogosian
Mikhail Sergachev — Erik Cernak
The New York Islanders are 28-21 all-time when facing elimination, which includes a 2-0 record this year. New York also holds a 3-8 record when trailing a series 3-2. … The Islanders recorded 75 total hits in Game 5. That is the most in a single game by any team this year during the playoffs. Of the 75, Cal Clutterbuck had 10 in the double-overtime win. … Tuesday’s game was the fifth-longest game in New York Islanders history. … Victor Hedman scored his eighth goal of the playoffs on Tuesday and became the seventh different defenseman in NHL history to score eight or more goals in the playoffs. … Tampa Bay is 4-2 all-time when leading a series 3-2. … Tampa has been a perfect 4-0 this postseason in games following a loss.
How to Watch
The game will air on NBCSN in the United States and CBC, Sportsnet and TVA in Canada. On the radio dial, the game will air on 98.7 FM ESPN New York, 88.7 FM WRHU and 103.9 FM LI News Radio.
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