Hudson Fasching #20 of the New York Islanders skates against...

Hudson Fasching #20 of the New York Islanders skates against the Winnipeg Jets at UBS Arena on Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2023 in Elmont, New York. Credit: Jim McIsaac

It’s one thing to have a next-man-up mentality when injuries inevitably hit an NHL team. It’s quite another thing to actually succeed with a depleted roster.

So far, so good for the Islanders, who have won their first two games without top-line playmaker Mathew Barzal (lower body).

“It’s just a buy-in to what we have to do in order to win hockey games,” coach Lane Lambert said.

Barzal will miss his third game on Friday night against the Los Angeles Kings at UBS Arena and the Islanders likely will be without fellow forwards Jean-Gabriel Pageau (injured reserve/upper body) and Josh Bailey (upper body). Like Barzal, Oliver Wahlstrom (injured reserve/lower body) and Cal Clutterbuck (injured reserve/upper body) remain out indefinitely.

“Next man up, it’s always the mentality, right?” said Hudson Fasching, whose third line with fellow AHL call-up Arnaud Durandeau and center Casey Cizikas was the Islanders’ best trio in Wednesday night’s 2-1 win over the visiting Jets despite not generating a point.

“We’ve been doing a great job, everybody stepping in, including myself. We’re trying to do our best and contribute,” Fasching said. “It’s hard to replace Barzy, but we play our game to the best of our abilities and just try to find ways to get wins.”

Fasching logged 11:30 with three shots against the Jets and consistently joined his linemates on the forecheck. Durandeau, in his second NHL game, also had three shots in 14:43.

Rookie Simon Holmstrom, who earned playing time with top-line center Bo Horvat, scored the third-period winner.

“It’s all you can do. Injuries are a part of the game,” said Matt Martin, the longtime fourth-liner who also has gotten minutes on the top line with Barzal injured. “We’re not the only team that has to go through that. The guys that have come up have done an unbelievable job. Everybody is upping their game just a little bit more to fill the void of missing so many of our key players. Now we’ve just got to keep going.”

Again, easier said than done.

The Kings are chasing Vegas for first place in the Pacific Division and the Islanders face a rematch with the Jets, chasing the Stars for the Central Division lead, in Winnipeg on Sunday. That starts a two-game road trip that includes a match against the Minnesota Wild, also in a Western Conference playoff spot.

Wednesday’s win over the Jets and Monday night’s 4-2 road win over the Penguins primarily were the result of goalie Ilya Sorokin’s brilliant performances.

The Islanders’ power play, which entered Saturday’s 6-2 road loss to the NHL-leading Bruins on a 5-for-13 tear, is 0-for-9 since Barzal exited early in the first period in Boston.

The Islanders’ second power-play unit against the Jets included Durandeau and Otto Koivula, brought up from Bridgeport for the game. The Islanders went 0-for-4 on the man advantage with only four shots against the Jets.

Koivula also gave the Jets their final power-play opportunity with a sloppy tripping penalty on Karson Kuhlman at 12:51 of the third period.

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