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Niederreiter and Strome prepare for exhibition

Saturday, 09.24.2011 / 3:41 PM ET
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New York Islanders - Training Camp 2011

For the Islanders top selections in each of the past two NHL Entry Drafts, having the opportunity to play in tonight’s preseason matchup against the New Jersey Devils is pretty exciting. What’s going on in the head’s of Ryan Strome and Nino Niederreiter? To show they belong in the lineup come Oct. 8 for the regular season opener.

“I’m a skill guy, but I think right now it’s important that I show that I fit in and play good defensively and be accountable on all ends of the ice,” said Strome, who was selected fifth overall in 2011. “It’s important that I give the coaches that mindset that if they put me out there, they can be comfortable.”

As Strome will see his first NHL action tonight, centering a line for Jay Pandolfo and Tim Wallace, he said there are definitely nerves, but he knows he has to play his game and prove he belongs out there.

“I’m pretty nervous,” he said. “I actually slept pretty well last night. I didn’t think I would, but I got a good night’s sleep and I’m just looking forward to the opportunity. It’s a big responsibility, but I’m excited and I hope I fit in pretty well and have a good game.”

He added, “Watching the game last night, it was a lot faster and a lot more physical. I think I’ve adjusted pretty quickly here. I’ve never played in a game, but hopefully I can adapt to all of the different changes out there.”

The situation is slightly different for the Isles fifth overall selection in 2010. Niederreiter played in preseason games last season and suited up for the Islanders during nine regular season games in the 2010-11 campaign before being sent back to his junior team, the Portland Winterhawks.

“I just want to play as best as possible and just make the little things, that’s all I can do,” Niederreiter said. “Preseason is a pretty high, intense level. It reminds me of last year, but it’s definitely different. I think I’m more prepared for it (this year).”

Niederreiter will play on the top line alongside last year’s leading scorer, John Tavares, and his linemate, Matt Moulson, in tonight’s game.

"Obviously, I have the pleasure of playing with Johnny and Moulson, that’s going to be amazing,” he said. “It’s the first game for them. I already had two rookie games under my belt (this year), so tonight is the first time we really can see if we have good chemistry or not.“


Niederreiter’s play in those two rookie games was noticed by Head Coach Jack Capuano. His expectations for Niederreiter tonight are to play loose and play his game, complimenting Tavares and Moulson.

“He’s been good, he’s in a great shape,” Capuano said of Niederreiter. “He’s paying attention to detail. I think I can see it in his eyes. He’s not a guy that I’ve spent a lot of time around, but he’s all business. He’s serious. He wants to make a push hard.”

He added, “I want to make sure that’s he’s not out there tight and nervous. He’s at the point now where I think he knows what he needs to do.”

Nerves or not, Niederreiter said, “It’s definitely going to be great and I’m just very excited.”

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 52 39 9 4 171 117 82
2 FLA 54 32 16 6 150 122 70
3 NYR 53 30 18 5 150 135 65
4 NYI 52 28 18 6 145 129 62
5 TBL 53 29 20 4 140 127 62
6 DET 53 27 18 8 133 131 62
7 BOS 53 28 19 6 153 146 62
8 PIT 52 27 18 7 138 132 61
9 NJD 55 27 21 7 122 123 61
10 MTL 55 27 24 4 147 145 58
11 CAR 54 24 21 9 130 142 57
12 OTT 54 25 23 6 153 166 56
13 PHI 52 23 20 9 122 137 55
14 BUF 54 21 27 6 124 146 48
15 CBJ 55 21 28 6 137 170 48
16 TOR 52 19 24 9 120 144 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
K. Okposo 50 15 27 -9 42
J. Tavares 49 19 22 -3 41
F. Nielsen 52 15 19 -1 34
B. Nelson 52 20 11 0 31
M. Grabovski 52 9 15 2 24
J. Bailey 51 9 15 5 24
A. Lee 52 8 15 1 23
N. Leddy 52 3 20 -8 23
R. Strome 41 6 14 -5 20
C. Clutterbuck 51 11 4 6 15
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 13 11 4 .918 2.27
T. Greiss 14 6 2 .929 2.26
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