Isles Files

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

Thoughts after Thursday night's loss

Casey Cizikas scores a second-period goal past Ben

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

A few thoughts before the Wings come to town on Saturday and I take off for the weekend -- you’ll be in Jim Baumbach’s capable hands for Saturday night game coverage:

-- Thursday night was a real stinger, and it was evident after the game. Jack Capuano usually tries to zig when everyone else zags, so his mild postgame comments are not a sign of denial. He’s not one to pile on when he sees...

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Kevin Poulin to start again for Islanders

Islanders goalie Kevin Poulin stops a shot against

(Credit: AP)

Kevin Poulin will make his second consecutive start in goal on Tuesday for the Islanders, his first set of back-to-back starts since Feb. 20-21, 2012 -- of course, Poulin only played 95 seconds of the Feb. 20 game, pulled after allowing two goals.

But it’s still a bit of a change for the Isles, going with the 25-year-old goaltender to see if he can help right the team after a four-game losing...

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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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Islanders having another November swoon

John Tavares of the Islanders waits to take

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

MONTREAL-- Is this becoming yet another long Islanders November?

With Sunday night's 4-2 loss to the Canadiens, the Isles are 2-4-0 in November, emphasis on that middle number, since they¹ve lost four straight.

November has been the worst Isles month over the past three seasons -- with February of last season standing in for a usual November, since the season started in January. But...

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No talks with Andrew MacDonald just yet

Andrew MacDonald of the Islanders skates against the

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Aside from Thomas Vanek, the Isles have a pending UFA in defenseman Andrew MacDonald, who is coming off perhaps the most below-market deal anywhere in the NHL (he’s making $550,000 this season).

MacDonald is in line for a huge raise. Given the Isles’ depth woes on defense, one would think talks would have begun to keep him from the open market in July, but nothing has been initiated yet....

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It's about the Ws for Evgeni Nabokov

Evgeni Nabokov defends the net during a game

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Evgeni Nabokov is old enough to remember a time when there were only two numbers that mattered to goaltenders: Wins and goals-against average.

He piled up loads of the first and always was among the NHL leaders in the second category during his decade with the Sharks.

Now there’s not only save percentage that stands as the big statistic for a goaltender but even-strength save percentage...

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Thomas Vanek is Garth Snow's gamble

Islanders left wing Thomas Vanek skates during the

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

COLUMBUS -- The Thomas Vanek Watch is on. But don’t expect any sort of resolution until this season is much closer to its conclusion.

Vanek has been an Islander for two weeks now and played his sixth game on Saturday night here. He has no contract beyond this season, which has confounded some observers and fans. How could Garth Snow have dealt popular top-line wing Matt Moulson plus a first-round...

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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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Bouchard back in lineup for Isles

Islanders right wing Pierre-Marc Bouchard skates against the

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

Pierre-Marc Bouchard returns to the lineup Tuesday night for the Islanders and both of Jack Capuano’s rookies will be healthy scratches against the Sabres.

Capuano said he’d yet to make a determination as to which forward will come out of the lineup to allow Bouchard to return, but it was likely to be Brock Nelson, who was a healthy scratch in Chicago on Friday.

Matt Donovan, the Isles’...

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Kevin Poulin gets first start in goal

Islanders goalie Kevin Poulin stops a shot against

(Credit: AP)

CHICAGO -- Kevin Poulin is in goal, Cal Clutterbuck is in the lineup, Matt Moulson is en route and Brock Nelson is a likely scratch.

There are a few changes coming for the Islanders on Friday night here against the Hawks, topped by Poulin getting his first start of the season in net after Evgeni Nabokov had three strong games.

Nabokov will play on Saturday in Nashville and it was just...

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