Game Preview: NY Islanders vs. Vegas Golden Knights

Vegas Golden Knights v New York Islanders
Vegas Golden Knights v New York Islanders / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages
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The NY Islanders continue their road trip, as they head to T-Mobile Arena to take on the Vegas Golden Knights.

Last Game

The Isles continue to sputter as the team dropped its third in a row as they were swept in the season series by the Arizona Coyotes. The Isles started strong with an early 2-0 lead on goals by Sebastian Aho and Mat Barzal. They would, however, allow the next three. Noah Dobson would even the game up with a late second-period goal before allowing the first two goals of the third period. An Anthony Beauvillier goal with under two minutes to go gave the Isles hope but couldn't equalize as they fell 5-4 on their first trip to Mullet Arena.

The Knights remain among the best teams in the NHL, even with their starting netminder out for the season. Coming home to Vegas with their 44th and 45th points of the season from Chicago, the Knights remain at the top of the Western Conference.

Historical Matchup

The last matchup against Vegas was emotional for both the Isles fanbase and Knights goaltender Robin Lehner. Lehner spent only one season on Long Island, but the team and the area made a lasting impact. Almost a year ago to the date, during an emotional tribute by the Islanders, Lehner pointed to the tattoo of Long Island on his neck as he thanked the fans. Lehner has made his fondness for the people of Long Island known as he attributes the team and fans to his recovery from addiction. The Islanders were toppled by the Knights 4-3 in OT after allowing the game-tying goal with 48 seconds remaining. The knights scored two of their three attempts in the shootout as the Isles failed to score. Brock Nelson, Kieffer Bellows, and JG Pageau scored a goal each.

Players to Watch

After his fantastic second half of 2021-22, Dobson has continued to impress this season and has become one of the top offensive defensemen in the NHL. Currently second in goals among defensemen, Dobson only trails Erik Karlsson as he seems to have found the fountain of youth.

Filling in for Lehner, Logan Thompson has been god-sent for a team that calls sin city home. What could have been a lost season for a team strapped by the salary cap, Thompson has put himself right at the top of the Calder Trophy conversation for rookie of the year.

Projected Lines

Islanders

Anders Lee-Mat Barzal-Oliver Wahlstrom
Josh Bailey-Brock Nelson-Anthony Beauvillier
Zach Parise-Jean-Gabriel Pageau-Kyle Palmieri
Matt Martin-Casey Cizikas-Cal Clutterbuck

Robin Salo-Ryan Pulock
Alexander Romanov-Scott Mayfield
Sebastian Aho-Noah Dobson

Ilya Sorokin
Semyon Varlamov

Golden Knights

Phil Kessel- Chandler Stephenson-Mark Stone
Reilly Smith-William Karlsson-Jonathan Marchessault
Jonas Rondbjerg-Jake Leschyshyn-Mike Amadio
Will Carrier-Nicolas Roy-Keegan Kolesar

Alec Martonez-Nicolas Hague
Brayden McNabb-Danil Miromanov
Ben Hutton-Alex Pietrangello

Logan Thompson
Adin Hill

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