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Robin Lehner sidelined with 'tweak,' but Islanders goalie is not put on IR

Christopher Gibson is recalled from Bridgeport to back up Thomas Greiss against Winnipeg.

Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner reacts before a shootout

Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner reacts before a shootout against the Bruins at TD Garden on Nov. 29, 2018 in Boston. Photo Credit: Getty Images/Tim Bradbury

The aim eventually is to get goalie Robin Lehner some consistent playing time to see if he can get his game into rhythm and form a starting tandem with Thomas Greiss.

But those plans are temporarily on hold with Lehner sidelined.

Islanders coach Barry Trotz announced Lehner had suffered a “tweak” and was unable to dress for Tuesday night’s 3-1 loss to the Jets at Barclays Center. Christopher Gibson was recalled from Bridgeport to serve as Greiss’ backup, meaning the Islanders are carrying three goalies on their roster with Lehner not being placed on injured reserve.

Trotz said this tweak was unrelated to the back spasms that forced Lehner from a 6-3 win at Pittsburgh on Oct. 30 after two periods and kept him from suiting up for a 3-2 shootout win over the Penguins on Nov. 1 in Brooklyn.

“He just tweaked a little something, it’s nothing to be concerned with,” Trotz said. “It’s just a little bit precautionary. We didn’t put him on IR, there’s no need for that. We hope he’s good to go in the next day or so.”

Lehner made 35 saves in a 2-1 shootout loss at Boston on Thursday but Greiss has now started five of the last six games. Lehner’s only back-to-back starts after returning from his back spasms were Nov. 8-10, twin 4-2 losses at Tampa Bay and Florida.

The 27-year-old Swede is 4-5-2 with a 2.79 goals-against average and a .913 save percentage.

Notes & quotes: Captain Anders Lee, with his team-leading 10th goal of the season as he took a team-high six shots, now has a six-game goal streak against the Jets  . . .  Center Stephen Gionta, 35, was re-assigned to Bridgeport to make room for Gibson  . . . . Defenseman Luca Sbisa and left wing Ross Johnston were the healthy scratches.

The aim is to eventually get goalie Robin Lehner some consistent playing time to see if he can get his game into rhythm and form a starting tandem with Thomas Greiss.

But those plans are temporarily on hold with Lehner sidelined.

Islanders coach Barry Trotz announced that Lehner suffered a “tweak” and was unable to dress against the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday night at Barclays Center. Christopher Gibson was recalled from Bridgeport to serve as Greiss’ backup, meaning the Islanders are carrying three goalies on their roster with Lehner not being placed on injured reserve.

Trotz said this tweak was unrelated to the back spasms that forced Lehner from a 6-3 win at Pittsburgh on Oct. 30 after two periods and kept him from suiting up for a 3-2 shootout win over the Penguins on Nov. 1 in Brooklyn.

“He just tweaked a little something, it’s nothing to be concerned with,” Trotz said. “It’s just a little bit precautionary. We didn’t put him on IR, there’s no need for that. We hope he’s good to go in the next day or so.”

Lehner made 35 saves in a 2-1 shootout loss at Boston on Thursday, but including Tuesday, Greiss has started five of the last six games. Lehner’s only back-to-back starts after returning from his back spasms were Nov. 8-10, twin 4-2 losses at Tampa Bay and Florida.

Lehner, 27, who signed a one-year, $1.5-million deal after three seasons with the Sabres, is 4-5-2 with a 2.79 goals-against average and a .913 save percentage.

Notes & quotes: Center Stephen Gionta, 35, was re-assigned to Bridgeport to make room for Gibson on the roster after playing five games without a point since being recalled on Nov. 15 … Defenseman Luca Sbisa and left wing Ross Johnston were the healthy scratches.

New York Sports