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Veteran defenseman Braydon Coburn makes his Islanders debut against Flyers

The Flyers' Wade Allison and Islanders' Braydon Coburn

The Flyers' Wade Allison and Islanders' Braydon Coburn collide during the third period of an NHL game on Sunday in Philadelphia. Credit: AP/Matt Slocum

Barry Trotz wanted to get a look at newly acquired defenseman Braydon Coburn. He also wants to see more out of his younger players through the grind of this playoff push.

Second-year defenseman Noah Dobson came out of the lineup for Coburn in Sunday night’s 1-0 overtime win in Philadelphia.

It marked the first time this season that Trotz altered his top six defensemen by choice. Dobson missed eight games because of COVID-19 protocols.

Meanwhile, rookie right wing Oliver Wahlstrom logged 9:24 with one shot and has gone nine games without a point.

 

"Some of our young guys, this is a grind," Trotz said. "Noah, the last couple of games, hasn’t been the Noah that I want and I expect. Give him a little breather. Oliver Wahlstrom hasn’t done a whole lot for me. For the young players, the mental grind, they’re not used to it night in and night out.

"Some of the young players have gotten by on skill in the past. Even when they’re not at their best, they still contribute. And you can’t do that at this time of the year at this level of game that’s played."

The 36-year-old Coburn, who plays a physical, stay-at-home game, logged 12:53. The 6-5, 224-pounder, acquired from the Senators a week ago for a seventh-round pick, was paired with fellow lefty shooter Andy Greene, who moved to his off-side.

Isles files

The Islanders went 5-1-2 against the Flyers in their season series. Six of the eight games went past regulation, including the last four . . . Josh Bailey and Cal Clutterbuck both missed their second straight games with undisclosed injuries. Trotz did not specify a time line for either to return. "I’d probably say day-to-day before I would say week-to-week," he said. "I don’t have a clear understanding in terms of the timeline."

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