The New York Islanders made a roster move ahead of practice on Monday, recalling defenseman Samuel Bolduc from Bridgeport and returning center Otto Koivula to the AHL affiliate. The move to bring back up Bolduc comes after defenseman Sebastian Aho left Saturday night's 4-1 with versus the San Jose Sharks in the first period and did not return. Aho is considered day-to-day with an upper-body injury, but it appears likely he'll miss Tuesday's tilt with the Toronto Maple Leafs.
The Islanders have been carrying seven defenseman with Parker Wotherspoon being a healthy scratch on a consistent basis, but the decision to call up Bolduc was done because of the need for support on the second PP unit with Aho out of the lineup. In 56 games this season with the Bridgeport Islanders, Bolduc has 10 goals and 25 assists. He was named an AHL All-Star, but was unavaible to represent the organization given the needs at the NHL level.
In six NHL games, Bolduc played well, impressing the coaching staff and his teammates with his poise at the next level along with his natural attributes that make the 2019 second-round pick and prospect with upside to be a regular on the Isles blue line in the near future.
"(We have) a lot of trust in (Bolduc)," head coach Lane Lambert explained in early February. "We've talked about his poise, and he's got size, his reach. He does a lot of the little things well, good stick positioning and things like that. He's done a good job."
In eight games this season with the Islanders, Koivula registered two assists. He continues to be a plug and play depth option for the organization, but has yet to break through to stick on a healthy roster. In 45 games, the center has 12 goals and 13 assists for Bridgeport.