NY Islanders 2023-24 Report Card: Kyle MacLean Emerges As Valuable Piece to Roster

Carolina Hurricanes v New York Islanders - Game Four
Carolina Hurricanes v New York Islanders - Game Four / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages

He was an unexpected part of the NY Islanders run towards the postseason, but Kyle MacLean quickly became a fan favorite. Making his debut on January 19th, the final game of Lane Lambert's tenure with the team, MacLean became an instant replacement while Casey Cizikas was out with an injury, remaining in the lineup even after Cizikas returned.

*Read our previously Published player report cards: Sebastian Aho | Mat Barzal | Samuel Bolduc | Casey Cizikas | Cal Clutterbuck | Noah Dobson | Pierre Engvall | Hudson Fasching | Simon Holmstrom | Bo Horvat | Anders Lee

NY Islanders 2023-24 Report Card: Kyle MacLean

Cizikas has been the Islanders fourth line center for what feels like forever, but with changes coming to the roster for the 2024-25 season, it looks like MacLean may now fill that role.

MacLean made his NHL debut this season, a moment that became even more special with his father John MacLean, behind the bench as an assistant coach. His first goal came six games in his NHL career, on a second-period game-tying goal against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

With MacLean's addition to the roster, Patrick Roy could deploy Cizikas in other roles throughout the lineup, ultimately finding success on the first line with Mat Barzal and Bo Horvat.

MacLean appeared in 32 games this season, scoring 4 goals and adding 5 assists. He managed to get on the scoresheet during the playoffs, scoring the Islanders' only goal in a 3-1 loss in Game 1 against the Carolina Hurricanes.

Roy's trust in MacLean grew as the season progressed. Frequently playing under 10 minutes a game to start his career, his ice time increased exponentially, averaging 10:05 per game, and 11:55 during the playoffs.

MacLean is an RFA this off-season, as the Islanders can extend his to a low AAV contract, deploying him as the new center of the fourth line of the future.

Final Grade: B