4:15pm: Steve Bernier is the call-up for the Islanders, giving the journeyman forward another crack at the NHL. Bernier has played for six different NHL teams since being drafted 16th-overall by San Jose in 2003. Once a promising young power forward with goal scoring upside, Bernier hasn’t made an NHL appearance since the 2015-16 season.
10:38am: After another loss at the hands of the Columbus Blue Jackets last night, the New York Islanders have sent Josh Ho-Sang back to the minor leagues. While there is no guarantee this is for more than just the day, Ho-Sang is mired in a five-game pointless streak and the team doesn’t necessarily need the cap space. More likely it is an attempt to shake up the team after going 4-5-1 in their last ten and allowing 11 goals over the last two.
Ho-Sang has been the focus of displeasure from Islanders’ fans recently, as his high-risk style has resulted in more chances against than for of late. Still, he has 12 points in 21 games this season and is a dynamic offensive player. The Islanders—filled with offense suddenly, and trailing only Tampa Bay in goals for—need to find a way to keep the puck out of their own net with more regularity. Shane Prince, who is on a conditioning loan with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers could potentially be recalled in Ho-Sang’s place.
The Islanders currently sit in a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, but can’t afford to keep losing. In a season that must impress their star player John Tavares enough to warrant a long-term extension, missing the playoffs would be a huge problem. After acquiring Jordan Eberle and Andrew Ladd the last two offseasons to help their offense, the loss of Travis Hamonic seems to have really weakened them defensively. When combined with a terrible penalty kill and poor performances from both Thomas Greiss and Jaroslav Halak in net, the team has allowed 111 goals against this season—the most in the East and only trailing Arizona league-wide.