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Islanders Must Get Oliver Wahlstrom Back In The Lineup

UNIONDALE, NEW YORK - MARCH 06: Oliver Wahlstrom #26 of the New York Islanders skates in warm-ups prior to the gatme against he Buffalo Sabres at the Nassau Coliseum on March 06, 2021 in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
UNIONDALE, NEW YORK - MARCH 06: Oliver Wahlstrom #26 of the New York Islanders skates in warm-ups prior to the gatme against he Buffalo Sabres at the Nassau Coliseum on March 06, 2021 in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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Last night, the Islanders fell 1-0 in a shootout to the Washington Capitals. After a strong start to the first period, the Isles offense went dormant, especially in the third period with the game on the line.

They registered three shots in the period, two of which came on the power play. One five-on-five shot is not going to do it, no matter how good defensively or in net they are.

The common consensus is that the Islanders have too many passers, especially on the power play, and no one who can shoot with a shoot-first mentality. They have someone, he’s just been scratched the last two games.

Oliver Wahlstrom in his first 36 games this year, has 16 points (9 goals, 7 assists). While he’s been cold, no points in his last nine games, he is one of the rare Isles forwards who continuously gets shots on net.

He’s averaging just over two shots per game, 2.1 shots per game, but keep in mind he’s only getting 12 minutes of ice time on average. When looking over generating offense per 60 minutes, he’s been one of the best on the team.

In terms of expected goals per 60, he’s fourth on the team with a 1.02 trailing Anders Lee, Brock Nelson, and Kyle Palmieri. In goals per 60, he’s second at 1.25 trailing Anders Lee who was on a 1.52 pace.

What else do you need to see? He’s clearly one of the Islanders best goal generators and he can’t crack the lineup? I don’t get it. Leo Komarov and Michael Dal Colle both have to play over him as the offense has gone to sleep?

In their last seven games, they have one goal or less in five of them. There’s no way that you can sustain any kind of winning with that kind of offensive output. Sure, some of the Islanders other forwards have to do more, but I’m really not convinced that this team is “better off” with Wahlstrom out of the lineup.

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With nine games left and playoff positioning on the line, I have one thing left to say: #FreeWahlstrom

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