The New York Islanders are currently in the first wild card positon, but it will be a dogfight till the end of the season to secure their spot in the postseason. Every game matters and there was some good news this morning as head coach Lane Lambert told reporters, including Andrew Gross of Newsday, that the team is hopeful Mathew Barzal can return before the end of the regular season.
Barzal was listed as week-to-week over a month ago and hasn’t played since his third shift on February 18. The 25-year-old forward had 51 points in 58 games when he went down to injury, and would be a huge boost for the Islanders if things do come down to the last few games of the season.
- One of their Metropolitan Division rivals is about to get their own injury reinforcement, as Ryan Lindgren will return tonight for the New York Rangers. Lindgren hasn’t played since February 25, but returns to a Rangers team that has won four straight and is slowly closing the gap between them and the division leaders.
- Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic reports that John Carlson is close to returning for the Washington Capitals, but won’t play tonight. The injured defenseman was spotted in a regular jersey for the first time yesterday and is expected to make his long-awaited return this week. Carlson has been out since suffering a skull fracture back in December.
- The New Jersey Devils will be without Curtis Lazar for the next little while, as head coach Lindy Ruff explained he will “miss some time” with a lower-body injury. The 28-year-old forward was acquired from the Vancouver Canucks at the deadline and has yet to register a point in three games with the Devils.