The Islanders have built the core of their young team through the NHL Entry Draft and this year they looked to continue that trend. GM Garth Snow added one NHL ready player on draft day this year, Cal Clutterbuck. Clutterbuck was not drafted though, he was acquired through a trade with the Minnesota Wild. (Photo Credit: sportsnet.ca)
In the first half of a home and home with Pittsburgh, the Islanders came out swinging and brought down the high flying Penguins in a convincing 5-3 fashion. However the joys of winning were short-lived when it became apparent that whatever injury forced Evgeni Nabokov out of the game is serious enough to keep him out if the net for the rest of the season, this comes shortly after re-signing with the Islanders. Hopefully Nabokov will recover from this and be back in all-star form come October. (Photo Credit: SB Nation)
The Islanders have been getting secondary scoring in bundles over the past few games, and if they hope to give the Rangers more breathing room at the top of the Eastern Conference the line of Josh Bailey, Frans Nielsen, and Kyle Okposo will need to produce at the same rate they have been. Josh Bailey is currently riding a five game point streak including three assists on Tuesday in Pittsburgh. With two goals Tuesday night Nielsen now has a career high 17 for the season, with six games to play, including tonight, Nielsen is going to have to get moving if he hopes to become a 20 goal scorer.
Josh Bailey has been an incredibly inconsistent contributor for the New York Islanders. Bailey is playing in his fourth season with the Islanders, he played his first game back in 2008-09. He missed the first fourteen games of his rookie season with a lower-body injury; he would play his first NHL game on November 11, 2008 at home versus the Philadelphia Flyers. Josh recorded his first NHL point just one game later on November 13 in Ottawa when he assisted on Kyle Okposo’s game tying goal. The Islanders went on to win the game 3-1. Bailey recorded eight more assists on the road to his first goal, which came on January 2, 2009, in the same game as Doug Weight’s 1,000 point, against the Phoenix Coyotes. The game was bittersweet for Bailey, who was enthusiastic about his first goal, but disheartened by the 5-4 loss. He went on to record 25 points in his rookie campaign finishing with 7 goals and 18 assists. (Photo Credit: thehockeyjunkies.blogspot.com)