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New York Islanders

Wahlstrom Sits, Gm 73: Lines, Previews, & How to Watch vs. Penguins

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New York Islanders

After defeating the Pittsburgh Penguins (42-22-11) on Tuesday night at Belmont Park, the New York Islanders (34-29-9) are in Pittsburgh Thursday night. Puck drop is slated for 7 PM ET at PPG Paints Arena.

This is a first of a back-to-back for the New York Islanders, who are in Montreal to face the Canadiens on Friday night.

The Pittsburgh Penguins clinch a spot in the 2022 NHL Playoffs with any type of win over the New York Islanders.

Per MSG Network’s Shannon Hogan, Ilya Sorokin will start in goal for the New York Islanders Thursday. He stopped a career-high 43 shots on a career-high 47 shots faced back on Tuesday in the 5-4 shootout win over the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Over his last 10 contests, Sorokin is 7-3-0 with a 2.07 GAA and a .943 SV%.

That means that Semyon Varlamov will be in-between the pipes against the Montreal Canadiens on Friday.

Hogan also reported that Kieffer Bellows will be in the lineup Thursday, as Oliver Wahlstrom would take a seat.

Over the last three games, Wahlstrom has played very little, and after two periods of play on Tuesday against the Pittsburgh Penguins, he did not touch the ice again until the teams left the ice after the shootout.

After the game, Trotz was asked about Wahlstrom’s playing time and in a frustrated tone just said that he has to be better.

After lackluster performances against the Carolina Hurricanes this past Friday and the St. Louis Blues on Saturday, it seemed that the game plan was for Oliver Wahlstrom to watch from above on Tuesday night.

Wahlstrom remained on the ice after Tuesday’s morning skate, which is usually a sign that he would be a healthy scratch.

When Trotz was asked prior to the game if he had planned to make any personnel changes, Trotz said he had contemplated one, but the player he wanted to insert into the lineup was under the weather––so Wahlstrom played.

Although the player was not named, the only logical answer is Kieffer Bellows.

Bellows is back in the lineup after being a healthy scratch for the last six contests. He has not played since Mar. 31, a 5-2 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets.

On the season, Bellows has four goals and nine assists in a career-high 35 games played.

NEW YORK ISLANDERS LINEUP (PROJECTED)

Lee-Nelson-Beauvillier

Bailey–Pageau–Palmieri

Parise-Barzal-Bellows

Martin–Cizikas–Johnston

Pelech–Pulock

Chara–Dobson

Greene–Hutton

Sorokin

Varlamov

PITTSBURGH PENGUINS LINEUP (PROJECTED)

Guentzel-Crosby-Rust

Zucker-Carter–Rakell

Rodrigues-Blueger–McGinn

Heinen–Boyle–Kapanen

Matheson–Letang

Dumoulin-Marino

Friedman–Ruhwedel

Jarry

DeSmith

ISLANDERS GAME NOTES

The New York Islanders visit the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight, the second of a home-and-home series between the two clubs, and the final meeting between them this season.

In their last meeting on Tuesday night, Zach Parise and Josh Bailey each scored twice, to help the Islanders earn a 5-4 shootout victory at UBS Arena.

The win extended the Islanders’ Metropolitan Division win streak to six games, and they improved to 6-2-0 in their last eight games. This evening’s matchup is the first time the Islanders have visited PPG Paints Arena for a regular season matchup since March 29, 2021.

BETTING CORNER

The New York Islanders are the road underdogs against the Pittsburgh Penguins, coming in at +145. They are -180 on the reverse puck line. The Penguins are -170 and are +145 on the puck line.

The over for the contest is set at 5.5, with both set at -110.

These lines are subject to change. Please gamble responsibly.

HOW TO WATCH:

Thursday’s contest will be available on MSG+.  On the radio dial, the game can be heard on 1050 AM ESPN, 88.7 FM WRHU and 103.9 FM LI News Radio.