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Islanders’ Beauvillier needs to make most of return to lineup

Islanders' Josh Bailey, left, congratulates Anthony Beauvillier on

Islanders' Josh Bailey, left, congratulates Anthony Beauvillier on his goal during a game against the Wild on Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017, in St. Paul. Minn. Credit: AP / Jim Mone

SAINT PAUL, Minnesota — Anthony Beauvillier has been in the same spot as Josh Ho-Sang this season — both were healthy scratches three times through the first nine games.

But Ho-Sang is now in Bridgeport and Beauvillier is back in the Islanders lineup, hoping to bring his game to a better, more consistent level. He got off to a good start Thursday night by scoring the Islanders’ first goal against the Wild.

“It’s hard to see that, I texted Josh yesterday,” Beauvillier said. “It doesn’t really change anything for me. I still have to play, still have to work to stay in the lineup. I don’t think I’ve played my best games yet, but it’s coming. I just have to get my swagger back and I’ve been working hard the last two games.”

Beauvillier was clearly stung when Doug Weight sat him down in San Jose on Oct. 14 after Beauvillier took his usual spot in warmups. After three games out, he returned on Saturday against the Sharks in Brooklyn, but hasn’t had a major impact yet.

“It is tough. Like I said, it felt like it was forever,” he said. “I had a lot of time to think. Now I just have to go have fun, work hard, that’s the only thing I can control. I want to be in there every night so I know what I have to do.”

Pelech knows the PP

Adam Pelech may have been a surprise choice to join the Isles’ second power-play unit two games ago but he did set up Brock Nelson’s PPG on Tuesday, just the second Isles power-play goal in 28 opportunities this season.

Pelech has good power-play memories from 2013-14, his last season with Erie in the Ontario League.

“I think we were around 30 percent that year,” Pelech said, ticking off an impressive list of fellow power players: the Leafs’ Connor Brown, the Caps’ Andre Burakovsky and some kid named Connor McDavid. Pelech finished that season with nine goals and 45 assists in 60 games.

He said working the point at the NHL level isn’t much different.

“We’ve got talented guys out there and my job is to get them the puck quickly and give them some time and some space to make plays,” Pelech said.

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