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New York Islanders

Playoff Gameday: Islanders Expecting Lineup Changes Throughout Series vs. Flyers

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New York Islanders vs. Philadelphia Flyers

The New York Islanders will have everyone available when the open their Second Round series with the Philadelphia Flyers tonight.

That will be handy for the Islanders, who are expecting to make some lineup changes throughout the series with potentially two back-to-back situations. The circumstances surrounding this year’s postseason have already limited their practice time this week, and the condensed schedule means they might have to make some adjustments over the six-day span that will see them play four times.

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“I can only tell you (the lineup) will be reassessed at every game,” Trotz said this afternoon. “I think we look at our lineup with a little bit of a plan. Just like we have every series and we sort of react to the game. Or the play of the team or the play of the individual player. Knowing that there is a couple of back-to-backs I think there will be a few lineup changes and you’ll probably see that at both ends.”

The New York Islanders made their first significant lineup changes in Game 5 of the series against the Washington Capitals. Ross Johnston and Michael Dal Colle were both inserted into the lineup and Leo Komarov was shifted to the fourth line.

The Islanders defeated the Capitals 4-0 in Game 5 to eliminate them from the postseason. Komarov succeeded with Matt Martin and Casey Cizikas, while Clutterbuck was sidelined. Johnston and Dal Colle also played well in their roughly 10 minutes of time on the ice.

HNINY: New York Islanders Broadcasters Roundtable

“I thought we rolled all four lines really and we did our job, and did it effectively,” Martin said. “For us as a team, it really comes down to all four lines, all six D and our goaltender taking care of business doing our jobs. We win as a group and we don’t rely on anyone really and I’d like to think we’re a deep team too.

“When we do have guys in and out in the lineup we’re able to shuffle things around. Get other guys in there and still play the same style.”

This will be the second playoff series that the New York Islanders have had this year which has games scheduled on back-to-back days. The Islanders had one back-to-back in their Qualifying Round series with the Florida Panthers.

They will have two if the series goes a full seven games.

“I think you just need to do whatever you need to feel your best,” Nick Leddy said about the back-to-backs. “Having been through it a few years now you kind of understand what you need to do and how to take care of your body. I think you just automatically do it. it’s not one thing or the other. I think it’s also just being a professional and taking care of your body.”

Philadelphia Flyers

The Flyers enter the series as one of the hottest teams in the postseason. Philadelphia is 7-2-0 through nine games since the NHL restarted last month.

Philly won all three games in the round-robin and took care of the Montreal Canadiens in six games. The least amount of turnovers in the First Round with 46 and the most drawn penalties with 32.

Carter Hart also started in all six games for Philly and his .943 save percentage is the best among any goaltender in the playoffs.

“He’s obviously an exceptional young goalie,” Martin said. “He’s obviously playing with confidence right now. Kid with high expectations who is coming in and performing and we want to try to get to him early.”

Islanders, Flyers Regular Season Means Nothing in Playoffs

Game Notes

The Islanders are 1-3 against the Flyers in the postseason. Their only series win came in 1980 in the Stanley Cup Final. … Anthony Beauvillier leads the Islanders in goals through the Islanders first nine playoff contests with six. That also has him tied for the league lead in goals in the postseason. … Jakub Voracek leads the Flyers in goals (4) and points (8) in nine postseason games this year. … Claude Giroux has 56 points (18 goals, 38 assists) in 52 career games against the Islanders.

How to Watch

Locally the game will air on NBCSN and available to stream on NHL.TV outside of the New York market. On the radio dial, the game will air on 98.7 FM ESPN New York, 88.7 FM WRHU and 103.9 FM LI News Radio

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New York Islanders

Three Takeaways: Dobson, Bellows Look Good, Barzal Finds Two-Way Game in Win | NYHN+

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New York Islanders players

The New York Islanders started off the 2020-21 NHL season off on the right foot Thursday night with a 4-0 win over the New York Rangers.

The Islanders capitalized on the power play on several occasions, they received timely goaltending when they needed it and their top-six forwards found the back of the net. Not to mention, the play of several young Islanders hoping to maintain their spots on the roster.

Let’s take a look at three takeaways from the Islanders’ season-opening win over their Manhattan rivals:

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New York Islanders

GARDEN PARTY: Lee, Barzal Lead Islanders Shutout Thrashing of Rangers

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New York Islanders Anders lee Mathew Barzal

The New York Islanders will take a start like that any day.

The Islanders scored three times in the first period, anchored by goals from Anders Lee and Mathew Barzal, and kicked off the 2020-21 season with a 4-0 win over the New York Rangers. Brock Nelson also scored for the Islanders on Thursday.

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“I think we just wanted to start on the right foot and get to our game early,” Lee said. “Find that momentum by playing the way we play and I think we did a pretty good of that. It was the result of a good camp and everyone being ready for tonight, and Varly playing a great game as well. Just a good team effort.”

The season-opening win was anchored by a strong effort in the first and third period by the Isles, and a good performance in the net when they needed it from Semyon Varlamov. It was the 10th consecutive opening night start and second with the Islanders for Varlamov, who finished the night with 24 saves.

The opening night shutout was the Isles’ first since Chico Resch accomplished the feat in 1976 against Philadelphia.

“It’s always easy to play like that when we score first,” Varlamov said. “Overall I’m pretty happy with how we did today. I thought the team played very well.”

The Islanders finished the night with 33 shots on net, while holding the young Rangers to 24 shots.

The Isles special teams unit got plenty of work to start the season, with the Rangers giving the Islanders eight power-play chances on Thursday. They capitalized on two of their chances.

It didn’t take long for the Islanders to find the back of the net on Thursday night. It was a mere 2:33 into the game when Nelson lit the lamp for the first of four goals on the evening from the Long Island visitors.

The goal was the fourth fastest the Islanders have scored in a season-opening game in franchise history.

Anthon Beauvillier went for a shot inside the faceoff circle, but had it redirect off the skate of Adam Fox and went right to Nelson in the slot. Nelson quickly put it past Igor Shesterkin for the Isles’ first power-play goal of the year.

Just over a minute later, the Isles struck paydirt again. After Lee took a stick up high he stayed on the ice and after a Rangers turnover was able to create a two-on-one. The Islanders captain fired a shot of the New York goalie’s arm and in for his first of two goals on Thursday.

“I was a little upset. Took one to the teeth and I was making my way back,” Lee said about the goal. “I kind of got lucky that the puck got to Ledds and I could kind of take a chance on hoping that that one got out. He made a great play getting the puck down and it came right to me.”

Barzal capped off a strong first for the Isles with an impressive goal to make it 3-0 after weaving by three Rangers.

Despite a Rangers push in the second, the Islanders were the ones to add a goal in the third. Jordan Eberle threw the puck towards the net and Lee redirected the puck in the slot for his second of the night.

The goal was officially credited to Eberle, but video evidence clearly shows the puck was tipped by Lee.

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New York Islanders

County Exec Laura Curran Cheering on New York Islanders from Quarantine

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Nassau County Exec Laura Curran

As the New York Islanders open their season this evening many Islanders fans will be watching the game from home, which includes Nassau County’s most influential fan of the team county executive Laura Curran.

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran will be watching the Islanders battle the New York Rangers from quarantine after she was recently exposed to someone with COVID-19. Curran tweeted out a video this afternoon about her excitement for being able to watch the season opener in its entirety.

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“I guess the small silver lining of quarantine is that I get I watch TV tonight,” Curran said in the video. “And that means I get to watch the entire Islanders game.  Game one,  taking on the Rangers, 7 p.m. puck drops. I am ready.”

Curran’s office announced that the county executive had been exposed to COVID-19 on Wednesday night and she is at the beginning of a 10-day quarantine. Officials from the county executive’s office declined to disclose to Newsday where Curran had been exposed to the virus for privacy reasons.

Curran has been an unabashed fan of the Islanders and today was the second time in five days the Nassau County politician tweeted about the Islanders. The county executive tweeted “YES! YES! YES!” along with a GIF of Mathew Barzal following news that the Islanders star had re-signed for three years with the team on Saturday.

Curran has been a vocal supporter of the UBS Arena project at Belmont Park and of getting the Islanders back on Long Island before the opening of UBS Arena in the fall. Curran twice lobbied NHL commissioner Gary Bettman to allow the Islanders to play at Nassau Coliseum before their new home opens.

In 2019, Curran wrote to Bettman to help persuade him to allow the Islanders to play home playoff games on Long Island. The NHL eventually came to an agreement that allowed the Islanders to play their first-round series with the Pittsburgh Penguins at Nassau Coliseum and then after that all home postseason games would move to Barclays Center.

Last year, she called on Bettman again to allow the Islanders to play their final full season before UBS Arena at the Coliseum. The NHL eventually allowed the Islanders to do so after New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo stepped in.

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