New York Islanders left wing Anthony Beauvillier sets before a...

New York Islanders left wing Anthony Beauvillier sets before a face-off against the Buffalo Sabres in the second period of an NHL hockey game at Barclays Center on Friday, Dec. 23, 2016. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

Anthony Beauvillier can’t get in the lineup but he’s about to hit an important plateau in his rookie season.

Beauvillier was a healthy scratch for a fourth straight game and for the 13th time this season but the rookie forward is about to be on the Islanders roster for his 40th game this season, meaning he will accrue a year of NHL service time toward free agency.

NHL players reach free agency after seven seasons under the current CBA, though that agreement has an opt-out clause before the 2020-21 season, which is only four years into Beauvillier’s service time.

That 40-game number is arguably more important in today’s NHL than the 10-game mark for rookies to burn a year of their entry-level contracts. Beauvillier, who has four goals and five assists in 26 games, breezed past that 10-game mark quickly, playing 10 of the first 12 Islanders games this season.

But he’s been a healthy scratch in nine of the past 17. Jack Capuano said on Wednesday morning that he’s spoken with Beauvillier and feels the 18-year-old forward will get back in the lineup soon.

Hamonic out “a couple of games”

Travis Hamonic missed Wednesday’s game with a knee injury suffered in Saturday night’s 2-1 shootout loss to the Coyotes. He’s still listed as day-to-day, but Capuano said it would be “a couple of games” before Hamonic will return — most likely he’ll miss all three weekend road games against the Panthers, Hurricanes and Bruins.

That would open the door to the Islanders putting Hamonic on injured reserve to open a roster spot for another defenseman to accompany the team on the three-game trip. Scott Mayfield is the likeliest recall candidate, having played well in limited duty with the Isles this season.

Ryan Pulock is still recovering from an upper-body injury and may not be ready for a recall. Devon Toews, the first-year pro who was named Bridgeport’s only AHL All-Star, could be a long shot to come up for the trip as well.

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