New York Islanders are back. Sorta. Today the team got the all-clear to return to their practice facility. It's the first bit of good news for the Islanders in a few weeks, outside of UBS opening of course.
But "we talkin' bout practice". What about the game with the San Jose Sharks that is scheduled for Thursday? Is that game still going to happen? And if so, who will be there to play the game? Will the Isles get a few players back off the COVID protocol?
So even though we got an answer about practice it created a number of questions in it's wake.
New York Islanders are able to return to the ice for practice
We'll certainly find out more at the media availability scheduled for 12 PM today. But it stands to reason that if the Islanders are allowed to practice they'll be allowed to play on Thursday. Remember, that in order to practice, they needed to receive negative tests for players and staff this morning.
They clearly got that clearance, which is why they can practice. So we'll likely hear GM Lou Lamoriello say that Thursday's game will be played against the San Jose Sharks.
Now about the players currently on the COVID protocol list? Will any of them return for Thursday's game (assuming they play of course)? In case you weren't sure who's on the list here it is:
Josh Bailey practiced with the team before the team took on the Pittsburgh Penguins. So he'll certainly be an option for Thursday's game against the Sharks. Who else comes out, if anyone at all, remains to be seen.
That answer will have to wait till practice takes place and we can actually see who is/isn't out there. Or it will have to wait for Lou Lamoriello's presser after practice is over.