I think this is the second installment of the Shoot-the-puck-Josh! mandate. But now is as good as time as ever to revisit the issue.

Despite his playmaking abilities, Bailey is well aware he needs to shoot the puck more and be more selfish.

Yesterday's game extended Bailey's streak to 20 consecutive periods without a shot on goal. That is pretty remarkable, but there is some silver lining. Before this streak began has scored goals on his previous two shots. 

Accuracy is actually one of Bailey's biggest strengths. Heading into Saturday's game against Boston, Bailey was 8th in the league in shooting percentage (20.4) with seven goals on 34 shots. That may be a good indicator as to why Bailey is struggling to get pucks on net.

"I feel like I'm not going to beat goalies from certain spots," Bailey said, something he relayed to Scott Gordon about his discriminating nature with shot selection.

"But he told me, 'It's not necessarily your shot that is going to go in, but the second or third shot from that," Bailey said.

That's ben something Gordon has tried to emphasize, not just to Bailey, but his entire team. Gordon showed them video of David Krejci, Trent Hunter, and Matt Moulson creating scoring opportunities from an initial shot attempt that spurred others as a result.

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Gordon said he doesn't want to see Bailey pass up a shot and have that lead to a scoring chance at the other end, such as in Tampa Bay or the third period against Boston Saturday.

Gordon also said that Bailey, in his reluctance to shoot, often makes soft passes instead that are easy for other teams to read and pick off. That's not to say Gordon doesn't want Bailey to be making those soft touch passes at times--there is a time and place for those as well--but he wants Bailey to unleash his shot (one of the better ones on the team) more often.

Gordon will likely use Bailey on the left wing for at least a bit to give his young center more ice time. Beyond John Tavares' offensive production and Frans Nielsen's solid defensive play, Gordon said he is seeing a lot of potential out of fellow centerman Rob Schremp right now and wants to keep him in the mix.

Bailey, who had played shifts at the wing before but never for an entire game professionally, said he actually felt pretty good there and reasonably comfortable. Both Bailey and Gordon were planning on going over video later today to review his performance last night from that position.


 Rehabbing goaltender Rick DiPietro, who did not play the third period of his 2nd rehab start Friday because of tightness in his (unspecified) leg, has been receiving treatment the past two days and more should be known about his status tomorrow. For now, he remains questionable for Tuesday's game in Bridgeport, originally slated to be the last start of his conditioning stint.


Gordon said that defenseman Jack Hillen was feeling much better today than he was last night, when he injured his right foot after taking a shot to the skate. His status for tomorrow's game will likely by decided after the morning skate or before the game.

Same thing for Andy Sutton (groin), who said he felt good at practice today but would wait until tomorrow to reassess his situation.

I think one of them will play tomorrow, but if not, the Islanders are in somewhat dire straits.

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Bridgeport call-up Andrew MacDonald has played extremely well, but if the Islanders are forced to dip back into the Bridgeport pool, they may be somewhat limited since the next logical call-up, Dustin Kohn, is injured.

We'll see how this all unfolds tomorrow, but don't expect Gordon to make ends meet with 5 defenseman (Mark Streit played a whopping 29:08!). Although, since he's been getting reps occasionally with the d-men it's worth pointing out: In one shift on defense last night--on the Islanders' game-winning goal in OT--Kyle Okposo is +1.