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Isles Player To Watch: Mat Barzal

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The New York Islanders take on the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday night after 10 days without a game. Despite missing key players due to COVID-19 and injuries, the Islanders welcome back Mat Barzal.

He is the Islanders player to watch Thursday night against the Buffalo Sabres.

The Islanders’ top centerman has not played since Dec. 11 against the New Jersey Devils, as he was placed in COVID-19 protocol the morning of Dec. 14.

The Best From Barzal’s Eventful Game of Hide-and-Seek

Following the Holiday break, Barzal was back at practice and although it took a little bit for him to regain his legs, he is back looking like himself and has showcased a ton of energy.

With the Islanders short-handed, Barzal will look to help carry the Islanders to two points against the team that sits three points ahead of them in the Metropolitan Division standings.

Barzal enters tonight’s contests on a six-game point streak with one goal and eight assists over that span. He leads the Islanders in assists (12) and points (17) after 23 games.

At the brand new UBS Arena, Barzal has one goal and five assists in eight games. After failing to pick up a point in the first four home games of the season, Barzal has points in each of the last four games, with a goal and five assists.

In 15 career games against Buffalo, Barzal has two goals and five assists.

The Islanders have yet to play Buffalo this season, after facing this opponent seven times back in 2020-21 due to divisional realignment. In those seven games, Barzal notched one goal and three assists.

His only goal against Buffalo stood as the 2020-21 Goal of the Year.

 

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