John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports activities
The New York Islanders struggling protection suffered one other blow on Wednesday when it was revealed that top-pairing defenseman Ryan Pulock will miss four-to-six weeks after struggling a lower-body damage throughout Monday’s loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning.
The damage is believed to have stemmed from Pulock blocking a shot from Lightning ahead Mathieu Joseph in the course of the second interval of a 4-1 loss — the shot placing his the foot and ankle space.
“Obviously, he’s a pretty good defenseman for us,” Islanders head coach Barry Trotz stated after Monday’s sport (h/t NHL.com). “That’s an area where we have to correct a little bit. It’s a hole, but we’re going to have to find ways to fill that hole… But we’ll have to do it as a group of five guys on the ice and a goaltender and go from there.”
The Islanders didn’t announce that Pulock and Josh Bailey, who entered league COVID protocols, had been scratched from their sport on Tuesday in opposition to the Florida Panthers — a 6-1 loss — till roughly quarter-hour earlier than puck-drop.
Pulock’s loss offers a large gap in an Islanders protection that has already struggled mightily in latest days. Throughout a four-game dropping streak that ended their 13-game street journey, the Islanders had been outscored 19-4. It was the primary time since Trotz joined the Islanders as head coach that the workforce yielded 4 or extra objectives in 4 straight video games.
The 27-year-old was averaging 21:07 of ice time per sport this season, recording two assists in 12 video games for a protection that has regressed since they traded Nick Leddy to the Detroit Purple Wings in the course of the offseason.
It gained’t be capable of get replaced, however the Islanders should distribute the load amongst potential replacements throughout Pulock’s absence.
Sebastian Aho, who noticed his first motion of the season on Monday, will seemingly see common enjoying time on the blue line. The Islanders even have veteran Thomas Hickey and prime prospect Robin Salo, who has impressed within the minors to date this season, as potential in-house choices to bide time ought to Lou Lamoriello start scouring the commerce market for extra defensive assist.