Three questions facing the Islanders as veterans report for training camp on Thursday:
1. Will Noah Dobson make the team?
The prized defense prospect and 12th overall pick in 2018 either will make the Islanders or be returned to his junior hockey team since, at 19, he’s not AHL-eligible. He had a strong training camp last year and has only improved since. But the Islanders have seven veteran defensemen returning, so president and general manager Lou Lamoriello may have to open a roster spot via trade.
2. What about Oliver Wahlstrom, Josh Ho-Sang and the other forward prospects?
Coach Barry Trotz has said he’d like to see more production in the lineup, and Wahlstrom (the 11th overall pick in 2018) and the mercurial Ho-Sang certainly have offensive skills. The question is whether there are spots available. Michael Dal Colle graduated from prospect to NHL player last season and veteran Tom Kuhnhackl was re-signed. Burly Ross Johnston is in camp, too. Andrew Ladd (knee) probably won’t be ready to start the season, but Cal Clutterbuck (back) is expected to take his place alongside Casey Cizikas and Matt Martin come Oct. 4 against the Capitals.
3. What will the power play look like?
The Islanders hired assistant coach Jim Hiller away from the Maple Leafs to run the man-advantage. Training camp will be the first chance to see what changes he’ll make for a unit that last season ranked 29th in the 31-team NHL under the departed Scott Gomez.