Isles Files

Your source for behind-the-scenes New York Islanders hockey news and information.

Travis Hamonic returns to Long Island for more testing

Travis Hamonic (3) takes a shot on goal

(Credit: Joseph D. Sullivan)

TAMPA, Fla. -- Travis Hamonic has gone back to Long Island for further evaluation of his upper-body injury, which is believed to be a concussion.

That’s obviously bad news for the Islanders, who need to muddle through another game Thursday night against a fast Lightning team without their top defenseman.

Concussions are scary. Given the situation with another important Isles defenseman...

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Time for Isles to rebuild again?

Islanders prospect Ryan Strome skates during minicamp at

(Credit: James Escher)

ST. LOUIS -- Of all the questions that could be asked about the Islanders right now -- too many to list here, and I’ve got a plane to catch -- here’s one:

Is it time to rebuild the rebuild?

Garth Snow earned praise for jumping in as an inexperienced general manager seven years ago and committing to a bottom-to-top rebuilding of the organization. He stayed small-budget and low-key, amassing...

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Thomas Hickey back in Isles' lineup

Thomas Hickey of the Islanders defends against Eric

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Thomas Hickey is in the lineup for Wednesday’s visit from the Jets, shaking off the bruised ankle he suffered blocking a shot on Saturday.

That’s good news for the Isles and their depleted defense corps, which could ill afford to lose another regular. Aaron Ness goes back in after sitting the last two games in place of Radek Martinek.

“It’s definitely fair to say we haven’t been at our...

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Test of leadership for Isles, Tavares

Toronto Maple Leafs' Jay McClement, left, battles for

(Credit: AP)

TORONTO -- A few thoughts on the latest blah performance from the Islanders here on Tuesday night:

-- The players kept the doors to the locker room closed for a few extra minutes after the game. They did the same thing after the loss in Columbus 10 days earlier. It wasn’t exactly a cure-all then, and I think these players-only meetings can be a bit overblown at times.

Nearly every Islander...

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Still no timetable for Visnovsky, Strait

Lubomir Visnovsky skates during a game against the

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

The most maddening part for Jack Capuano and Garth Snow regarding the two injured defensemen, Lubomir Visnovsky and Brian Strait, is that both players’ injuries are so nebulous.

Visnovsky still has not reported back symptom-free to the team, now 29 days after suffering a concussion. Even when Visnovsky, who was sent to a specialist in Minnesota two weeks ago for an exam, does finally get to...

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Islanders injury updates

Lubomir Visnovsky skates during a game against the

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

A few health updates from the Isles’ day off on Monday, with the Predators coming to the Coliseum on Tuesday:

-- It does not appear Thomas Vanek (upper body) will need to go on injured reserve. Vanek, who was hurt in the first minute of Saturday’s loss in Columbus and missed Sunday’s game in Montreal, is still likely out of Tuesday’s game. But if he comes through a Tuesday morning workout...

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What's wrong with the Islanders?

New York Islanders goalie Evgeni Nabokov gets beat

(Credit: MCT)

RALEIGH, N.C. -- It’s time to ask and break down the following question: What’s wrong with the Islanders?

Let’s dive in.

Is it the goaltending?

Certainly, Evgeni Nabokov has not been good enough at times this season. The difference between what I like to call “Twitter Reality” and “Hockey Reality” is that not every goal in a bad game such as Tuesday’s is the goaltender’s fault....

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Isles still have something to play for

Eric Boulton and Arron Asham trade punches during

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

BUFFALO -- Islanders fans on Twitter let out a collective groan when I posted Jack Capuano’s lineup for Friday night: Eric Boulton remains in the lineup in place of Jesse Joensuu and Lubomir Visnovsky comes out for Thomas Hickey.

Capuano said Visnovsky, who has played 35 of the Isles’ 47 games so far (he missed the first 10 games of the season before he reported, then two more to return to...

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16 Islanders on verge of first NHL playoff experience

Travis Hamonic (3) is checked into the boards

(Credit: AP)

RALEIGH, N.C. -- The Islanders can clinch a playoff spot Tuesday night, and we’ve discussed over and over how it would be the first appearance for the long list of homegrown players on this roster.

Of the 27 Isles currently on the roster, 16 would be in an NHL postseason for the first time. That includes John Tavares, Kyle Okposo, Josh Bailey, Travis Hamonic and the other obvious ones.

But...

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Visnovsky-Hickey pairing playing big

Thomas Hickey of the Islanders skates against Quinton

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

Andrew MacDonald jokingly called Lubomir Visnovsky and Thomas Hickey the Isles’ “Twin Towers” defense pair.

But the 5-10 Visnovsky and the 5-10 Hickey have been perhaps the Isles’ steadiest defense pair at even strength. Visnovsky leads the Isles with a plus-12 rating and Hickey is right behind at plus-10.

Five or 10 years ago, no NHL coach would dream of pairing two under 6-foot defensemen...

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