Islanders' Possible Lineup: Update

Due to recent Islanders news and developments during the first two days of training camp a previous Checking Line post had to be updated. 

It has become apparent that Lubomir Visnovsky will not be reporting to the Islanders’ training camp after skipping a flight the team booked for him on Sunday. The NHL is waiting to see if the KHL will stick to their guns and not allow him to play on his current team, Slovan Bratislava, where he was playing due to the lockout. 

 

 

Josh Bailey will miss the first 2-4 weeks of the season due to a knee injury he suffered while playing in Germany during the lockout. He had his knee scoped on Wednesday, and Bailey and the Islanders are hoping for a speedy recovery. It has also been reported on Twitter that Islanders’ forward Jessee Joensuu will miss the beginning of the season due to injury. (Photo Credit: AP)

 

Finally, to many Islander fans and writers’ surprise the Islanders did not recall Nino Niederreiter or Matt Donovan from the Bridgeport Sound Tigers for the abbreviated training camp. Snow and the Islanders do not want to repeat the mistakes they made by rushing Josh Bailey’s development, so fans can expect Niederreiter to remain in the AHL this season barring an abundance of injuries on the front lines. However with a shallow back end it is surprising that the Islanders have chosen not to recall top Bridgeport defenseman Matt Donovan, especially with top prospect Calvin de Haan sidelined with a season ending injury (the defenseman version of DP?). 

 

Finally the Islanders claimed, defenseman, Joe Finley off of waivers from the Buffalo Sabres. Finley seems to be a depth defenseman but with the developments in the Visnovsky story he may wind up at the Coliseum Saturday night. 

 

With these announcements coming from the Islanders over the past few days the teams’ lineup will look slightly different than expected a week ago. 

 

Offense:

Without Ryan Strome in the lineup:

 

Line 1: Matt Moulson - John Tavares - Kyle Okposo

Line 2: Michael Grabner - Frans Nielsen - Brad Boyes

Line 3: David Ullstrom - Casey Cizikas - Colin McDonald

Line 4: Matt Martin - Marty Reasoner - Eric Boulton

 

Despite the desire to not rush his development, Ryan Strome appears that he may be ready to perform at the NHL level. If the Islanders believe this, it would only make sense to give him top six forward ice time. Anything less would be detrimental to his development. The addition of Strome in a top six role would significantly improve the Islanders’ forward lines.

With Strome in the lineup:

 

Line 1: Matt Moulson - John Tavares - Kyle Okposo

Line 2: Michael Grabner - Ryan Strome - Brad Boyes

Line 3: David Ullstrom - Frans Nielsen - Colin McDonald

Line 4: Matt Martin - Casey Cizikas - Eric Boulton

 

When fully healthy:

 

Line 1: Moulson - Tavares - Okposo

Line 2: Josh Bailey - Strome - Boyes

Line 3: Grabner - Nielsen - McDonald

Line 4: Martin - Cizikas - Jesse Joensuu

 

Defense:
Without Visnovsky:

 

Pair 1: Travis Hamonic - Andy MacDonald

Pair 2: Mark Streit - Radek Martinek

Pair 3: Jon Landry - Matt Carkner

Keep Ty Wishart up as a healthy scratch and swap him with Carkner/Landry on a game-to-game, week-to-week basis.
(Photo Credit: Nate Seager/Yahoo Sports)

With Visnovsky:

 

Pair 1: Hamonic - Visnovsky

Pair 2: Streit - MacDonald

Jon LandryPair 3: Jon Landry - Radek Martinek

Keep Carkner up for rivalry games as well as be ready to recall Wishart at a moments notice.

 

The Islanders are hoping to start this shortened season off with a bang against the, division rival, New Jersey Devils on Saturday. Although starting with a few injuries and the drama surrounding Lubomir Visnovsky the Islanders are fielding one of their most competitive teams in years. The hope is to make a push for the playoffs this season, the reality is they are almost there. The staff, the players, the bloggers, the podcasters and the fans can all feel it. The Islanders are moving in the right direction, and they are close. (Photo Credit: Dan Hickling)

 

 

 

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