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NYHNH Daily: Martin Set to Return for Islanders, Kane Suspended & More

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The New York Islanders (0-2-0) are in Chicago to face the Blackhawks (0-2-1) as both teams look for their first win of the young NHL season. Puck drop is slated for just after the 8 PM hour on ESPN. The Islanders may be getting two important pieces back as fourth-line winger Matt Martin could return tonight along with goaltender Semyon Varlamov, who may be in between the pipes later in the week. Without Martin, the Islanders fourth line has not been as effective and his return could be the spark the Islanders need after stumbling out of the gate.

These stories and more in today’s daily links!

Matt Martin (ankle) and Semyon Varlamov (soreness) both started the season on Injury Reserve. Martin is likely to play tonight against the Blackhawks, while Varlamov has not been ruled out of starting against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday. Both players look to help Islanders turn things around. (NYI Hockey Now)

The Islanders fourth line, their identity line, is not the same one piece is missing. That has been the case to start the season, as Matt Martin worked his way back from offseason ankle surgery. The fill-ins in Ross Johnston against Carolina and Leo Komarov against Florida were not able to do enough to get the line going. With Martin likely to return against the Blackhawks, can he provide the spark the team needs to get their first win of the NHL season? (NYI Hockey Now)

When the schedule came out and showed the Islanders on a 13-game road trip to kick off the 2021-22 NHL season, it brought about a lot of negative conversations. It would be the longest ever start on the road, but it does not mean it cannot be a positive for the Stanley Cup contenders. But it could be a blessing in disguise. (The Athletic)

After a down year for the Boston Bruins in 2020-21, Jake DeBrusk had a lot to work on in the offseason. With the acquisition of Taylor Hall last year, DeBrusk was moved to his off-wing, was no longer playing second-line minutes and even served as a healthy scratch leading to trade rumors. Early this season, he is showing an attack mentality that had not been seen from the 25-year old and could lead to more success this season. (Boston Hockey Now)

Pittsburgh Penguins forward Zach Aston-Reese did not start the season due to battling COVID-19. The vaccinated forward dealt with rather tough symptoms, and while he did not want to get political and advocate for the vaccination, he did tell the media that he was very thankful he was. (Pittsburgh Hockey Now)

For Washington Capitals defenseman Justin Schultz, it had not been complete smooth sailing at the NHL level. After dominating with the Oilers to start his career, the high-profiled college free agent struggled towards the end of his time there. He was dealt to Pittsburgh and played a few years there, where he was able to figure some things out. Then he made his way to Washington, but with COVID-19 restrictions, it was all hockey and not much of anything else. Now as he enters his second year with the team, he finally is starting to feel at home. (Washington Hockey Now)

After being “ordinary” through training camp, Anthony Duclair has shined through the first two games of the season for the Florida Panthers. Head coach Joel Quenneville has liked what he has seen and has elevated Duclair to the top line, as he will play with Sasha Barkov and Carter Verhaeghe. (Florida Hockey Now)

The NHL clearly has a policing problem. When the referees do not do their job effectively, players take things into their own hands, and more times then not have to pay the price of fines or suspensions. Detroit Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin was suspended after the first game of the season for punching Joseph of the Tampa Bay Lightning, after he was hit from behind. Larkin apologized for his decision but the league needs to figure it out because while the suspension was justified, the first hit was very illegal and should have been called. (Detroit Hockey Now)

The Toronto Maple Leafs lost in overtime to the New York Rangers as Igor Shesterkin stood on his head to get his team the extra point. Auston Matthews did return, but could not find the back of the net on his eight shots. Despite Toronto controlling pace of play during regulation, the wild overtime could have gone either way in a spectacular three-on-tree showdown. (Toronto Hockey Now)

The Montreal Canadiens welcome back Mike Hoffman, who after signing a deal this offseason, started the season on Injury Reserve. Lines had to be juggled with Hoffman entering the lineup, as he could play Tuesday against the San Jose Sharks or at the latest against the Carolina Hurricanes, in Jesperi Kotkaniemi’s return after agreeing to offer sheet this offseason, with it not being matched by Montreal. (Montreal Hockey Now)

Brett Howden may have had an opportunity to secure a spot in the Vegas Golden Knights preseason. But when a lower body injury sustained in Salt Lake City last month put him on the shelf for nearly three weeks, that chance went by the boards. However, with Max Pacioretty out for six weeks and Mark Stone likely to miss some time as well, Howden gets a second chance to make a first impression. (Vegas Hockey Now

Finally, Colorado Avalanche forward Nathan Mackinnon has tested negative for COVID-19. He will join his team in Washington D.C. today. If he tests negative again this morning, he could make his way into the game tonight. (Colorado Hockey Now)

San Jose Sharks forward Evander Kane has been suspended 21 games by the NHL for violating their COVID-19 regulation. Kane submitted a fake vaccination card and now must pay the price, while he deals with the handful of issues arising this offseason in his personal life. (San Jose Hockey Now)

The Calgary Flames blew a slim lead to the Anaheim Ducks on Monday, falling in overtime 3-2. Despite dominating for the majority of the games, Calgary was firing blanks which allowed Ducks to get a late goal to tie things and then the eventual winner. Here are the takeaways. (Calgary Hockey Now)

Europe represents a tad over 30% of NHLer’s today and the Vancouver Canucks are a microcosm of that number. The Canucks are at exactly 25% European when you break down their team. If you look around the NHL, the hockey world is indeed growing. (Vancouver Hockey Now)

 

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