LGD: Islands in the Stream

Tonight we have a matchup between two teams who have long
been basement dwellers in the league. One of the two teams has been drafting
well and was finally ready to make significant moves to push for a playoff spot
this season, the other is the Leafs.

We also get our first look at Nikolai Kulemin as the
opposition tonight (unfortunately
without his loveably crazy BFF),
and we can assume he wants to remind Carlyle
and Nonis that they shouldn’t have let him go.

The Leafs

After picking up 1 point in back to back games against a
division rival it certainly would be nice to see the Leafs turn around their
slow start. Being back home against Ottawa tomorrow night doesn’t make the
schedule any easier, but you’d hope that Carlyle would look to use his 4th
line more to offset any potential fatigue. As of right now there hasn’t been a
recall made to replace Kozun on the roster, but being able to swap in three
fresh players and a rested goaltender tomorrow would seem like a beneficial
move.

Projected Lines via Daily Faceoff

van Riemsdyk – Bozak
– Kessel
Lupul – Kadri – Winnik
Komarov – Santorelli – Clarkson
Frattin – Holland – Panik

Phaneuf – Franson
Percy – Polak
Rielly – Gardiner

The Islanders

Forget Cocoon Bozak, how about Cocoon Garth Snow?! After
years of accumulating core players through the draft, Garth Snow finally (with
the help of new investor $$$) decided to spend a little on free agency and via
trades adding Grabovski, Kulemin, Halak, Boychuk, and Leddy. While it’s still
fun to laugh at the Niederreiter for Clutterbuck trade, the team looks to be
good enough to compete in the Eastern conference despite some question marks on
the blueline after Hamonic, Leddy, and Boychuk. I miss the LOL DiPietro days.

Projected Lines via Daily Faceoff

Conacher – Tavares –
Okposo
– Nelson – Clutterbuck
Bailey – Nielsen – Strome
Martin – Cizikas – McDonald

Leddy – Boychuk
Hickey – Hamonic
de Haan – Strait

Visnovsky and Hamonic
are game time decisions

Starting Goaltenders

 

vs.

What to look out for

  • Does Carlyle get his Santorelli vs. Tavares matchup? Is it
    actually effective?
  • Can Kulemin keep the tradition of ex-Leafs having big games against Toronto
    alive?
  • The sad realization that any player on the Islanders third line would be a top
    line center on the Leafs
  • How many times is Nelson called Nielsen and Nielsen called Nelson?