EAST MEADOW, NY–Before Wednesday’s practice, the New York Islanders made a few roster announcements, despite the NHL being in a roster freeze until the new year.
After missing the last three games, the New York Islanders have placed forward Cal Clutterbuck on Injured Reserve retroactive to Dec. 16. He will not be eligible to play until the Islanders Dec. 27 contest against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
He left the contest against the Arizona Coyotes and did not return. Up until Wednesday, Clutterbuck had been listed as day-to-day, with an upper-body injury. I asked New York Islanders general manager Lou Lamoriello if Clutterbuck’s latest injury was related to his shoulder, which he had surgery on at the end of last season.
Lamoriello said it was a completely different injury, which brings about some concern.
This season, the 35-year-old winger has missed seven games due to injuries, three separate injuries. He has struggled to stay on the rink, leaving a few games early as well.
In 26 games, Clutterbuck has three goals and two assists.
Following Monday’s game, the Islanders sent forwards Hudson Fasching and Simon Holmstrom, along with goaltender Cory Schneider back to Bridgeport ahead of the roster freeze, which hit all NHL teams at midnight.
Per the roster freeze, teams cannot make trades, place players on waivers, or send any of their players down their AHL or ECHL affiliate until Dec. 28.
These three players were sent down, likely paper transactions, in case the likes of Kyle Palmieri, Cal Clutterbuck, Adam Pelech, or Semyon Varlamov were available for either of the Islanders’ two final contests before the holiday, New Year’s break.
If any of them were ready and no roster spot was available, the Islanders would be stuck in a pickle.
But with Clutterbuck now on IR, along with no updates on the statuses of the other injured parties, the Islanders have recalled Fasching, Holmstrom, and Schneider, which also tells us that we are likely not to see any of the injured parties play these final two games.