DiPietro undergoes concussion testing

New York Islanders goalie Rick DiPietro listens at New York Islanders goalie Rick DiPietro listens at Nassau Coliseum. (May 11, 2011) Photo Credit: Howard Schnapp

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Rick DiPietro spent Thursday going through some neurological tests to determine if he suffered a concussion when he took a slap shot off his helmet during Wednesday's practice.

DiPietro, who has had a couple of known concussions in his Islanders career -- the last coming when he suffered facial fractures from a fight with Penguins goaltender Brent Johnson on Feb. 2 -- was not at Nassau Coliseum for last night's game.

Evgeni Nabokov was Al Montoya's backup.

"[DiPietro] said he felt pretty good [on Wednesday]," coach Jack Capuano said. "He's getting checked out and we'll see what they say."

Nabokov put on the Islanders' uniform for the first time this regular season.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

"Baby steps," he joked about going from scratch to backup. "This is just a little bit different for me. It's really hard to prepare. The best way is to practice well and just be ready whenever they call for you."

Strome back to juniorsThe Islanders sent first-round pick Ryan Strome back to Niagara of the Ontario League after the 18-year-old was a healthy scratch the first two games.

"Right now, with the numbers we have, the best thing is for him to go back there and play," Capuano said. "He needs to play as much hockey as he can."

Strome wasn't scheduled to get in a regular-season game except as an emergency replacement. The reason he stayed beyond training camp was to soak up some atmosphere and knowledge before heading back to his junior team, which has struggled without him, starting the season 2-4-1.

"I've got some things I need to work on, and I want to come back here next year and try it again," Strome said. "Another year [of juniors] never hurt anyone. Nino [Niederreiter] did it and he looks way better now."

Subscribe to Newsday’s sports newsletter for stories, photos and videos about your favorite New York teams plus national sports news and events.

You also may be interested in: