Dec 19, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Islanders right wing Kyle Okposo (21) takes a shot against the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
In the wake of fans hearing the news that forward Kyle Okposo will miss six to eight weeks, many fans are calling for the team to make a trade.
This comment might have been understandable if this was the same Islanders’ team from five years ago. However, this summer Garth Snow improved the Islanders up front by adding players like Nikolay Kulemin and Mikhail Grabovski making this one of the deepest Isles team in recent memory. This is not a team with marginal veterans like Keith Aucoin, Jesse Joensuu, and Marty Reasoner. Rather, this Islanders’ team looks stacked from top to bottom.
With proven veterans and young studs in the lineup, the debate going into this season was whether or not Ryan Strome would make the team due to the Islanders’ depth. In past seasons, the Islanders were more likely to fill a roster spot with a well-traveled but ineffective veteran.
The Islanders will be able to overcome some of the production lost with Okposo’s injury when they get Grabovski back who has been out with a foot injury that he sustained against the Devils on January 9th. Grabovski skated with the first line in practice today and will most likely fill the void left by Okposo’s absence.
If the Islanders were to make a trade, whom would they replace in the lineup? With the team surging there is nobody who is worthy of losing his roster spot. Here is what the Islanders lineup should look like against the Rangers on Tuesday night. It looks pretty solid so you have to ask yourself if this lineup really needs any changes?
Bailey – Tavares- Grabovski
Lee – Nielsen- Strome
Grabner- Nelson- Kulemin
Martin- Cizikas- Clutterbuck