Isles Files

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

Isles trade talk heating up with Vanek, MacDonald

Thomas Vanek skates during an outdoor practice at

(Credit: James Escher)

The trade deadline is seven days away and the Islanders will be busy -- just not quite yet.

TSN’s Bob McKenzie reported on Tuesday night that six teams have called Islanders GM Garth Snow about Thomas Vanek, with one team making a “serious offer” that was, obviously, rejected. McKenzie said there are a similar number of teams inquiring about Andrew MacDonald, with no offers made as of yet.

My...

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Visnovsky back in lineup for Isles

Lubomir Visnovsky skates during a game against the

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Lubomir Visnovsky returns to the Islanders lineup on Monday night after missing 46 games with a concussion. That’s good news for the team’s defense corps.

“It’s basically like picking up a veteran at the trade deadline,” Thomas Hickey said. “He played such big minutes for us, first-unit power play, last couple minutes of a game. For us young guys, we’d never had those experiences, so it took...

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Updates on Vanek, MacDonald, Hamonic, Nabokov

Thomas Vanek celebrates his third-period goal against the

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Had a brief chat with Isles GM Garth Snow earlier Wednesday, covering a few topics of interest. Here are some takeaways from that conversation:

-- Snow and Steve Bartlett, the agent for Thomas Vanek, have had some dialogue over the past few weeks and that should pick up in the next couple of weeks. Snow and the Islanders need to know in fairly short order if Vanek is willing to sign long-term....

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On Olympic picks and Islander goalies

Thomas Vanek of the Islanders celebrates his second-period

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

TORONTO -- The big deal up here Tuesday is the Canadian Olympic roster announcement at 11 a.m.

From an Islanders perspective, there isn’t much mystery. John Tavares will be named to the squad for the Sochi Games and it was a lock even before Monday night’s hat trick/five-point game, though that was probably a nice bonus for Steve Yzerman and the rest of the Canadian brain trust.

Thomas...

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Brian Strait, Evgeni Nabokov return to practice

Evgeni Nabokov makes a save during a game

(Credit: Getty)

Brian Strait and Evgeni Nabokov, two of the Isles’ injured regulars, got back on the ice Monday morning.

Nabokov has been out since injured his groin on Nov. 16. He will likely join the Islanders on their five-game road trip that begins on Thursday in St. Louis, but it’s unlikely he will play until after the team returns home.

Strait has been out since Oct. 22 with a mysterious ailment,...

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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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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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Nabokov gets start over Poulin on Saturday

Evgeni Nabokov of the Islanders makes a save

(Credit: Getty Images)

COLUMBUS --  Evgeni Nabokov gets the call on Saturday night here against the Blue Jackets, who have lost five straight.

Cue the internet outrage!

But here's the case for Nabokov on Saturday and Kevin Poulin on Sunday, in his hometown of Montreal:

-- Poulin has started on consecutive nights in the NHL just once, on Feb. 20-21, 2012. He was pulled after allowing two goals in...

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Isles' Frans Nielsen says team should be angry after 6-2 loss

Washington Capitals right wing Alex Ovechkin (8) tries

(Credit: MCT Chuck Myers)

RALEIGH, N.C. -- The Isles got back to work on Wednesday, trying to erase the bad memories of the second period in Tuesday’s 6-2 loss to the Caps in Washington.

“For me, it was the first time all year I didn’t think we channeled our energy the right way,” Jack Capuano said. “There was a lot of frustration on the bench and I thought it carried over in that period.”

The Isles gave up five...

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