As announced on his Twitter page last night, 20-year-old rookie Kevin Poulin will start tonight against the Sidney Crosby-less Penguins.
Crosby will miss his ninth game of the season tonight with a concussion, although Pittsburgh has received ample contributions from its supporting cast throughout that stretch. In the past 8 games, Jordan Staal has 7 points (3 goals, 4 assists) and Chris Kunitz and Kris Letang both have five points each during that span.
Poulin is coming off his second career win Friday in Buffalo, when he entered the game for injured Nathan Lawson (MCL strain in left knee) to preserve the victory.
Bridgeport call-up Rhett Rakhshani was taken off injured reserve yesterday (concussion) and returned on loan to the Sound Tigers.
Michael Grabner, who was selected to represent the Islanders as a rookie for the All Star Game skills competition, is rolling into the weekend's festivities on a good tear. The speedy Austrian winger will look to extend a six-game point streak (5 goals, 2 assists) tonight.
**As of last night, there had been no resolution to the Evgeni Nabokov situation. Although the 35-year-old goaltender signed a one-year deal with Detroit last Thursday, the Islanders claimed him off waivers Saturday. Nabokov has refused to report, although general manager Garth Snow has kept an open line of communication with him since this weekend. The Islanders have yet to decide on a course of action to take if he stays put.