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New York Islanders

Another Islanders D-Man Goes Down: Bortuzzo Placed On IR

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AP Photo/Frank Franklin II

Things didn’t look good as defenseman Robert Bortuzzo couldn’t get back to his feet, struggling to put weight on his right leg after taking a hit last night during the New York Islanders’ overtime loss to the Colorado Avalanche last night in Denver.

On Wednesday afternoon, the image wasn’t any prettier as the Islanders placed Bortuzzo on injured reserve with a lower-body injury.

Bortuzzo’s injury comes with a bit of irony for the Islanders.

The team has dealt with multiple injuries to their backend this season and acquired Bortuzzo in a trade from the St. Louis Blues just a few weeks ago as a reinforcement.

In 11 games with the New York, Bortuzzo was -3 and primarily served as a penalty killer.

Bortuzzo wasn’t the only member of the team to suffer an injury last night, either.

Goaltender Semyon Varlamov left the game at Colorado towards the end of the first period and did not return. The Islanders have recalled goalie Ken Appleby from AHL Bridgeport on emergency loan.

Varlamov was listed as day-t0-day last week after “tweaking” something during a loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Dec. 27.

If there are any positives in this situation for the Islanders, defenseman Adam Pelech appears to be nearing a return from long-term injured reserve.

Pelech has been out of the lineup with an upper-body injury since Nov. 25. He’s participated in practice the last few days and is traveling with the team on their road trip.

However, if and when the Islanders choose to activate Pelech, they will need to clear a roster spot for him, as their roster is currently at the maximum of 23 players after calling up Appleby.

The Islanders will face the Arizona Coyotes tomorrow night at Mullet Arena at 9 p.m. EST.

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