Isles Files

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

Thomas Vanek trade a solid move, but can Islanders keep him?

Buffalo Sabres' left winger Thomas Vanek eyes the

(Credit: AP)

After the biggest Islanders trade in quite a while -- perhaps since the last time these two teams made a meaningful trade, when the Isles acquired the rights to Michael Peca for Tim Connolly and Taylor Pyatt in the summer of 2001 -- we’ve all had a night to sleep on it and gather our thoughts.

Here are some of mine after the Isles dealt popular, steady Matt Moulson, their first round pick...

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Isles are up and down in Pittsburgh

John Tavares of the Islanders and Sidney Crosby

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

PITTSBURGH -- The Islanders have a rather mixed bag, history wise, in this city and this relatively new building where the Penguins play.

Friday night’s game should add to that memorable list either way.

If the Isles can pull out a win over the 7-2-0 Penguins with a defense that will feature Matt Carkner and recent signee Radek Martinek, plus goaltender Evgeni Nabokov, who gets the start...

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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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Nelson, Donovan to play season opener

Brock Nelson of the Bridgeport Sound Tigers prepares

(Credit: Getty Images)

A few notes off the Friday morning skate here in Newark:

-- Jack Capuano will go with the four lines and top six defensemen from the last week of training camp, meaning Eric Boulton is out among the forwards and Matt Carkner and rookie Griffin Reinhart will sit among the defensemen. Matt Donovan will make his first Isles appearance since 2011-12, and Brock Nelson makes his regular-season debut.

“We...

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4 Islanders who need to produce now

Islanders defenseman Matt Donovan chases the puck against

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

Jack Capuano said Friday morning that the Islanders’ game with the Predators on Friday night at Nassau Coliseum is “a big game for a few guys.”

He wouldn’t elaborate, as usual, but let’s take a look at the evidence from this preseason to see who needs to have a productive night:

Matt Donovan

Like any rookie, Donovan needs to take advantage of an opportunity in a game. He’s definitely...

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Isles' young defense, Brock Nelson and Anders Lee

Islanders prospect Anders Lee skates during minicamp at

(Credit: James Escher)

Some notes from Thursday’s Isles-Devils game in Newark:

-- Jack Capuano was particularly pleased with the work of his very inexperienced defense against a Devils team that had about 75 percent of its opening night roster on the ice. Griffin Reinhart, Ryan Pulock, Andrey Pedan and Scott Mayfield all played very capably; Mike Dalhuisen, the 24-year-old out of The Netherlands and Quinnipiac University...

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Isles' Cal Clutterbuck will miss 'extended time' with leg laceration

Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck skates during training

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

The Isles' first night of the preseason was a costly one. Cal Clutterbuck, the energetic forward acquired from the Wild on draft day for former first-round pick Nino Niederreiter, suffered a skate laceration to his leg and "will miss some extended time," according to Islanders coach Jack Capuano.

Clutterbuck played in the split-squad game against the Flames in Calgary on Tuesday...

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Isles lines and pairings for preseason debut

Ryan Strome looks on during the Islanders Rookie

(Credit: Mike Stobe)

With the morning skates underway in Saskatchewan, here are the lines, defense pairs and goaltenders for each of the Isles’ split-squad games Tuesday night:

REGINA

Moulson-Tavares-Bouchard Lee-Nelson-Strome Martin-Cizikas-McDonald Gallant-Sundstrom-Boulton

Hickey-Visnovsky Strait-Hamonic Finley-Ness

Nabokov Reiter

CALGARY

Bailey-Nielsen-Okposo Grabner-Regin-Clutterbuck...

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Heading into Isles' first preseason game . . .

Islanders center Pierre-Marc Bouchard skates during training camp

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

A few notes on the first preseason gameday, with the team in Regina and Calgary and me... not.

-- We’ll have line combos and defense pairings after the Isles skate in Regina later this morning (both game rosters are skating in Regina, then the Calgary group is flying there). But you can assume that Jack Capuano will stick with the lines he drew up for the first four days of training camp,...

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