Isles Files

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

John Tavares talks chemistry, younger players, coaching and more

John Tavares discusses his season-ending knee injury during

(Credit: Barry Sloan)

Since we're heading toward a rather quiet time from the Islanders as the NHL playoffs begin without them, I'll have a couple posts here of interviews with players from Monday's breakup day.

Today, we'll begin with John Tavares. He spoke on a variety of topics, including the chemistry "hiccup" the team suffered when Matt Moulson was traded, who he thinks might work well on his left side next...

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Too many points-less Isles right now

Islanders' Frans Nielsen controls the puck against the

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

Jack Capuano admitted he’s not a “stat guy” after the Islanders’ latest debacle on Tuesday -- don’t get excited, advanced-stats gang, he wasn’t even talking about those -- but even he had to mention the most ridiculous of all the ridiculous numbers coming out of this 8-15-5 team.

The Islanders are now 0-13-3 when scoring two goals or fewer. In a defense-first league, in a division where teams...

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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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Michael Grabner expected the scratch

Michael Grabner of the Islanders skates against the

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

TORONTO -- Michael Grabner says he felt this move coming on.

Grabner will be a healthy scratch on Tuesday night here against the Leafs, the first time he’s missed a game without an injury or the impending birth of his son since Oct. 9, 2010, shortly after he was claimed off waivers from the Panthers.

“Everybody knows what my role is and I haven’t scored a point in 12 games,” Grabner...

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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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Fixing the Isles' power play problems

Islanders left wing Thomas Vanek skates during the

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

COLUMBUS -- We don’t need another 1200-word breakdown of what’s doing with your Islanders today. But we can dive into some of the bad and some of the good coming out of Thursday’s 1-0 loss to the Hurricanes:

-- Atop the list of bad things is the power play, now at 0-for-21 and sliding. It is also 0-for-18 since Thomas Vanek arrived, though John Tavares’ goal in DC was essentially a PPG, since...

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What the playoffs mean to me: Josh Bailey

Josh Bailey of the Islanders is seen on

(Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

Josh Bailey, like Kyle Okposo, has perhaps had the most up-and-down Isles career. He went straight to the NHL at 18, spent a couple weeks in the minors and now has become an integral part of what’s happening at the ripe old age of 23.

Here’s his “In Your Own Words” on the playoffs:

“It’s exciting and we’ve waited a long time. That being said, if you just get satisfied and happy about...

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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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Islanders locker-room quotes after making the playoffs

Matt Moulson and Islanders' fans celebrate his first-period

(Credit: David Pokress)

Some quotes from around the Islanders' locker room in Raleigh, N.C., on Tuesday night after they clinched their first playoff berth since 2007.

John Tavares: “We had to win a lot more games late because we put ourselves behind the eight-ball with the start to the season we had. We knew we needed to start winning some games that we’d been losing the first half of the season, and we needed 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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