A brutal two weeks for the Islanders continued on Tuesday as president and basic supervisor Lou Lamoriello introduced that Zdeno Chara has entered COVID protocol and ahead Brock Nelson will miss two-to-four weeks attributable to a lower-body damage.
Chara is the seventh member of the Islanders to check constructive, becoming a member of Josh Bailey, Anders Lee, Adam Pelech, Andy Greene, Ross Johnston, and Kieffer Bellows. Anthony Beauvillier initially examined constructive for the virus on Saturday, forcing him to overlook the workforce’s residence opener at UBS Area, however the outcomes yielded a false constructive, permitting him to return on Sunday.
It has left the Islanders roster trying extra like their minor-league affiliate in Bridgeport quite than an NHL aspect. They’ve been compelled to usher in the NHL debuts of defensemen Robin Salo and Grant Hutton whereas Sebastian Aho has obtained common taking part in time with half of the Islanders’ blue line in COVID protocols.
Chara’s absence now places 4 of the Islanders’ six
opening-night starters on the shelf.
The lack of Nelson — who was injured throughout Sunday’s 3-0 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs — for an prolonged stretch is one other hammer blow for the Islanders, who’re already with out prime defenseman Ryan Pulock for four-to-six weeks due to a lower-body damage. Nelson is the workforce’s main purpose scorer with 9 on the season, together with two throughout Saturday’s loss in opposition to the Calgary Flames.
To fill the vacancies on the roster, the Islanders have recalled defenseman Thomas Hickey and ahead Anatolii Golyshev from Bridgeport.
“We’ll continue to do what we have control of,” Lamoriello stated. “These are difficult times but we’ll stay focused with the players we have, what our abilities are to replace players if necessary, and to stay as positive as we possibly can. There’s no way you can approach it or handle it any differently.”
Lamoriello revealed that he has had conversations with the NHL on potential postponements, together with Wednesday’s rivalry recreation at UBS Area in opposition to the crosstown-rival Rangers. Nevertheless, no selections have been made on the time of this text’s publishing.
“All we can do is focus on today and hone in on [Wednesday],” Lamoriello stated.
The NHL has already postponed video games this season for the Ottawa Senators this season after they’d 10 gamers take a look at constructive for COVID-19, however there doesn’t appear to be a concrete variety of constructive checks that warrant such actions.
“I have no knowledge of what the threshold is,” Lamoriello stated. “I believe that’s in the hands of the doctors in the NHL and the players association and the infectious disease people… I’ve asked the question but I don’t know if there is.”
The Islanders practiced on Tuesday and if they’re compelled to take the ice in opposition to the Rangers, they’ll try to halt a six-game shedding streak that has seen them drop to final place in the Metropolitan Division.
“They’re putting on a great front if they’re not approaching it with the way I’m trying to articulate it,” Lamoriello stated of his gamers. “They’re not dwelling on anything. This is a good group, a veteran group, and I’d hope that the veterans are telling the younger players who have come in to just stay focused. Right now I think they’re doing everything they possibly can, as is the coaching staff.”