Mathew Barzal tweaked something in the New York Islanders loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday night. He was kept out of the Islanders lineup on Sunday in the team's 4-0 win over the Ducks but it doesn't look like he will be returning tonight.
Andrew Gross is reporting that Mathew Barzal watched morning skate from the bench. The good news, is that Barzal didn't have a brace or anything on his leg which you would have to imagine is a good sign going forward.
The Islanders are in Colorado taking on one of the best teams in the league in the Avalanche. Unfortunately, this isn't going to be a finals preview like some predicted back before the season but the Islanders still are fighting hard picking up points in five of their last six games with three wins.
I would anticipate the Islanders running out lines similar to what we saw on Sunday:
Lee - Nelson - Beauvillier
Parise - Pageau - Palmieri
Bellows - Bailey - Wahlstrom
Johnston - Cizikas - Clutterbuck
Greene - Dobson
Pelech - Mayfield
Aho - Pulock
This unit was productive for the Islanders over the weekend and with Ross Johnston's two-point performance I can't see Barry Trotz pulling him out of the lineup. Still, this is a much different task at hand with the Av's.
Colorado has five players at a point per game or better and Andre Burakovsky and Devon Toews are not off by much. In 42 games this year, familiar face Devon Toews has 39 points (9 goals, 30 assists) is playing 25:26 per night and thriving for Jared Bednar's team.
His play since arriving in Colorado has been a massive story and one that's a hot button issue on Isles Twitter. The New York Islanders will do their best to contain him and the others but they'll have to do it without their star center, Mat Barzal.