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Morning Skate Updates - Islanders vs. Blackhawks

Updates from the Isles morning skate at Nassau Coliseum.

Thursday, 01.02.2014 / 10:11 AM / News
By Cory Wright
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Morning Skate Updates - Islanders vs. Blackhawks
Updates from the Isles morning skate at Nassau Coliseum.
The Islanders ended 2013 with a bang and look to carry that momentum into the New Year. However, there’s no break in the schedule for the Islanders, who host the Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks two nights after playing the reigning Eastern conference champion Boston Bruins.

The Blackhawks are the most offensively potent team in the NHL, having scored a league-leading 154 goals through 42 games (3.67 per game). They are led by the dynamic duo of Patrick Kane and Jonathan, both of whom are near the top the NHL’s scoring lead. The Islanders counter with John Tavares and Kyle Okposo, who combined for seven points in Tuesday’s 5-3 comeback win. The Islanders have also scored 10 goals in their last two games, setting the stage for some run-and-gun hockey tonight at Nassau Coliseum.



Ahead of tonight’s tilt, the Islanders took morning skate at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike. Here are some news, notes and quotes from today’s skate.

Weather Advisory: Tonight’s game will be played, as scheduled, at 7 p.m.

Lineup Notes: Jack Capuano is going with the same lineup from Tuesday’s win in Boston. Evgeni Nabokov will start in goal, while Josh Bailey (day-to-day, upper body), Radek Martinek (back spasms) and Eric Boulton (healthy scratch) are out.



Okposo: Kyle Okposo continues to produce at a torrid rate, posting 11 points (5g/6a) on a current seven-game point streak. The second-leading American scorer this season (40 points in 41 games) was left off of Team USA for the Sochi Olympics and expressed his disappointment during a media scrum.

Okposo: I just want to play my game and keep moving forward. They picked the best team in their opinion to get the gold and I’m disappointed that I’m not part of it… I’m going to keep going and working on my game. I will watch the games, I have a lot of friends over there on all teams.



Via Twitter:

Capuano: He’s worked extremely hard this season. He always pays the price in the summer to get himself in tremendous shape. He’s a high-character guy, he’s a leader and I’m sure it was disappointing to hear the news, but knowing the way he is, he’ll continue to battle hard.

Vanek: Thomas Vanek is riding a six-game point streak (3g/6a).



Bailey Out: Josh Bailey will miss his third consecutive game after sustaining an upper-body injury. Bailey was on the ice for the morning skate, but Capuano said he was going through the team’s protocol and is still day-to-day.



From the Coach: This is a very unique hockey club they have. They have a lot of guys who will be going to Sochi and we are going to have to skate and be prepared to take away time and space from a lot of their skill guys and simplify the game as much as we can.





SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 MTL 65 41 18 6 175 146 88
2 NYI 66 42 21 3 211 185 87
3 TBL 66 40 20 6 217 173 86
4 NYR 63 39 17 7 197 155 85
5 DET 62 36 15 11 182 160 83
6 PIT 63 36 18 9 182 158 81
7 WSH 66 35 21 10 194 164 80
8 BOS 63 31 22 10 168 165 72
9 FLA 65 28 23 14 159 185 70
10 PHI 65 28 25 12 173 187 68
11 OTT 62 28 23 11 176 167 67
12 NJD 64 27 27 10 144 165 64
13 TOR 65 26 34 5 175 199 57
14 CBJ 63 26 33 4 163 201 56
15 CAR 62 24 31 7 144 167 55
16 BUF 64 19 40 5 123 215 43

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 66 31 36 5 67
K. Okposo 46 14 30 -2 44
R. Strome 66 14 28 22 42
B. Nelson 66 18 20 8 38
F. Nielsen 66 11 26 13 37
A. Lee 60 22 13 14 35
J. Bailey 54 13 20 13 33
J. Boychuk 56 7 25 15 32
N. Leddy 66 9 19 17 28
T. Hamonic 56 4 21 16 25
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 34 13 1 .911 2.48
C. Johnson 8 8 1 .889 3.08

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