WASHINGTON — As the list of the injured and banged up continues to grow, expect the Islanders to have a different look in the last week of the regular season.
Jack Capuano said before Tuesday night’s game that the Islanders’ ravaged roster would likely lead to lineup tweaks through the regular-season finale Sunday. That means more ice time for players like Ryan Pulock — who scored his second career goal against the Lightning Monday — and Scott Mayfield, who was recalled from Bridgeport before the game against the Capitals.
Mayfield played five games with the Islanders in the 2013-2014 season, and three more this year. He averaged 14:57 in those three games, with eight hits and two blocks.
Tuesday, Steve Bernier (21st game) and Eric Boulton (third game) started on the fourth line, while Cal Clutterbuck and Shane Prince were out of the lineup. Rookies Pulock and Mayfield started on defense.
Both Clutterbuck and defenseman Calvin de Haan, who was also scratched, suffered hard hits in the game against the Bolts. De Haan warmed up with the team and appeared to be a game-time decision, but Clutterbuck did not. Travis Hamonic is out for the remainder of the regular season with an apparent knee injury.
“It’s fatigue,” Capuano said of the shuffling. “You’re going to see a different lineup, probably, with some of our guys with their injuries.”
The Islanders are embroiled in a brutal stretch that began with a home and away back-to-back Monday and Tuesday, and will end with a game against the Flyers Sunday — a total of five games in seven days.
“I’m not going to put anybody in here that’s not going to be able to help our team, No. 1, and that’s the most important thing,” Capuano said, speaking of Clutterbuck and de Haan. “These guys are smart. They’re not going to put themselves in front of the team. We’ll see how it goes as this night move forward.”