Guess who’s back…back again? The Islanders will free Ryan Pulock as they try to get back on track against Nashville on Saturday night.
- New York Islanders (5-4-1, 11 points)
- Nashville Predators (5-3-2, 12 points)
- Bridgestone Arena, Nashville, TN
- Gametime: 8 p.m. ET
A New Look On The Powerplay
Ryan Pulock, one of the few defensemen on the Islanders roster who isn’t afraid to fire pucks at the net, is back in the lineup tonight. More importantly, he’s expected to quarterback the second powerplay unit, per Newsday‘s Arthur Staple.
#Isles new PP units today:
— Arthur Staple (@StapeAthletic) October 27, 2017
For those still trying to put names with numbers, those lines look like this:
That’s right: The Isles look like they’re going to roll with four forwards and one defenseman on each power play unit. Considering how pathetic the team has looked with a man advantage this season, that they’re trying something new can only be seen positively.
But the powerplay isn’t the only place we’re going to see new lines from head coach Doug Weight.
Shaking Things Up
Granted, these lines were only used in Friday’s practice and anything can change, but, per the team’s official Twitter account, here are the four lines the Isles might be rolling out tonight in Smashville.
#Isles lines at practice today in Nashville:
— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) October 27, 2017
The first thing that jumps out at you is that Eberle and Tavares are no longer together. Instead, Bailey, who is tied with JT for the team lead in scoring with 10 points, takes his place.
Eberle drops down to the second line, where he and Nelson will flank Barzal. Casey Cizikas won’t be a fourth-line center tonight, jumping up to the third line, while Anthony Beauvillier will take his place in between Nikolai Kulemin and Cal Clutterbuck.
In essence, the Isles are rolling with two scoring lines and two checking lines, though all four are more than capable of putting the puck in the net.
Defensively, the Isles are switching things up as well.
Defense pairs to start tonight: 2-55, 44-4, 50-6.
— Arthur Staple (@StapeAthletic) October 28, 2017
Again, for the numerically challenged:
Jaro Back In Goal, Rinne To Sit?
Halak has been spectacular against Nashville over the course of his career. In 21 starts, he’s gone 13-3-4 with an impressive 1.80 goals-against average and .929 save percentage.
That’s great news for the Isles and, perhaps, the edge they need to leave Tennessee with a win.