Morning Skate Updates 2/6/14

Updates from the Islanders morning skate at Nassau Coliseum.

Thursday, 02.6.2014 / 12:50 PM ET / News
By Cory Wright
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Morning Skate Updates 2\/6\/14
Updates from the Islanders morning skate at Nassau Coliseum.
Tonight the Islanders and Flames meet for the first time since Dec. 29, 2011, when the Isles beat the Flames 3-1 at Nassau Coliseum. The Islanders are 5-1-0 in their last six against Calgary, but the Flames have overhauled their roster over the past two years and familiar faces such as Jarome Iginla and Miikka Kiprusoff have since departed.

Despite sitting near the bottom of the stacked Pacific Division, the Flames have played well as of late. Prior to Tuesday’s 2-0 shutout loss in Montreal, Calgary had won five in a row, including wins over Chicago, San Jose and Minnesota.

What the Flames roster lacks in star power, it more than makes up for in work ethic and grit. President of Hockey Operations Brian Burke’s signature is all over the Calgary roster, with heavyweights (such as the 6’4”, 235 lbs. duo of Kevin Westgarth and Brian McGrattan) sprinkled throughout the lineup. Expect a tight-checking, hard-hitting game from the prairie boys.

Ahead of tonight’s game, the Islanders held an optional morning skate at Nassau Coliseum. Here are some news, notes and quotes from today’s skate.


The Islanders held an optional morning skate at Nassau Coliseum.

Lineup Notes/Changes:


Nabokov Starts: Evgeni Nabokov will make his fourth straight start tonight against the Flames. Nabokov is coming off a 22-save shutout over the Capitals on Tuesday.


Evgeni Nabokov will start for the Islanders tonight against the Flames.

Vs. the Flames: The Islanders are 5-1-0 in their last six against the Flames and have won the last three meetings at the Coliseum.

Hamonic Out:
Travis Hamonic continued to skate with the team, but will not dress for tonight’s game. Head coach Jack Capuano said he was a possibility for Saturday.


Travis Hamonic will not dress tonight, but could be in the lineup on Saturday.

Penalty Kill: The Islanders penalty kill has been perfect over the last five games, killing 14 straight penalties in that span, including six against the Washington Capitals Tuesday night. The Islanders have killed 23-of-25 penalties over a nine-game span.

Home Comes to Hickey: Calgary native Thomas Hickey will play his hometown team for the first time tonight. Hickey said he wasn’t sure what the most exciting part would be, but said the familiarity of the jersey and the team makes this a special game for him. He also welcomed the chance to talk to the Calgary media and catch up on life back home.

Hickey: [Calgary’s] a really big town but it’s actually a small town especially in the hockey community. I recognize a lot of those people and I follow how they’re doing. I think they sort of do the same when they know people are from Calgary.


Matt Carkner takes a shot during the Islanders morning skate at Nassau Coliseum.

From the Coach: They obviously have a back end that transitions real well with Wideman, Brodie, Russell and Giordano they get up in the play and we will see that tonight…So I wouldn’t particularly say it’s just one guy they’ve got like every other system they want that fourth man attacking and they’ll have that tonight.

Hot Flames: Flames captain Mark Giordano had his nine-game point streak (4g/6a) snapped Tuesday in Montreal, but is still one of the hottest Flames on the ice. The offensive-minded defenseman has nine goals and 19 assists in 38 games this season and should surpass his career-high of 11 goals, should he stay healthy the rest of the way. Giordano is also responsible in his own end, with a team-high plus-three rating this season.


The Flames held a morning skate at Nassau Coliseum.

Top Scorer: Jiri Hudler leads the Flames with 42 points (18g/24a) in 56 games this season. The Czech forward needs 15 points in the final 26 games of the season to match his career-high (57), set in the 2008-09 season.

Berra Starts: Reto Berra will start for the Flames tonight. Berra is 7-15-2 this season with a 3.11 GAA and a .894 SV%.


SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - MTL 76 47 21 8 200 169 102
2 x - NYR 75 47 21 7 228 177 101
3 TBL 76 46 23 7 244 198 99
4 PIT 76 42 23 11 210 190 95
5 NYI 77 45 27 5 235 215 95
6 DET 75 40 23 12 220 206 92
7 WSH 76 41 25 10 223 188 92
8 BOS 76 38 25 13 201 196 89
9 OTT 75 37 26 12 218 203 86
10 FLA 76 35 26 15 190 207 85
11 PHI 76 30 29 17 198 219 77
12 CBJ 75 36 35 4 207 232 76
13 NJD 76 31 33 12 168 194 74
14 CAR 75 28 36 11 174 204 67
15 TOR 76 28 42 6 198 244 62
16 BUF 75 20 47 8 144 254 48

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 77 34 43 -2 77
R. Strome 76 16 32 20 48
K. Okposo 55 16 31 -11 47
F. Nielsen 76 14 28 8 42
B. Nelson 77 19 22 7 41
A. Lee 71 23 16 10 39
J. Bailey 65 15 23 3 38
J. Boychuk 67 8 25 9 33
N. Leddy 73 10 21 14 31
T. Hamonic 67 5 26 16 31
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 36 16 2 .913 2.42
C. Johnson 8 8 1 .889 3.08

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