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NHL Preview: Florida Panthers versus New York Islanders

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The Panthers Come into Brooklyn looking to end recent woes against the Islanders.

The Panthers look to reduce their early season downslope and start getting their stuff together against the Islanders. Last season, the Panthers owned the Islanders with a 2-0-1 record against them. In addition, these teams have had bad blood with one another since the first round of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs where the Islanders won the series 4-2.

Tale of the tape

Florida (1-3-3)

Florida is coming off of a 5-2 loss against the New York Rangers after allowing three goals in the 2nd period. The Panthers have also had a huge goaltending carousel since Roberto Luongo went down with an injury. Both Michael Hutchinson and James Reimer have to save percentages below .900 and goals against averages near 4 goals or more.

In addition, the power play has slumped significantly, only scoring on one out of four opportunities against the Rangers and allowing two shorthanded goals so far this season. As a result, they are ranked 25th in the league on the power play. On the other side, the penalty kill has not been so great to the Panthers either. Last game, the Panthers allowed two power play goals on five power-play chances.

Additionally, the Panthers only have one win in their first seven games. If the Cats want to start looking towards the right track for the season, it needs to start now.

New York (3-4-0)

Much like their opponent, the New York Islanders are coming off of a beat down handed by the San Jose Sharks by a score of 4-1. This will be their first home game after a four-game road trip. Near the bottom of the Metropolitan division, the Islanders look to surge up despite losing John Tavares in free agency, and they have the talent to pull it off.

Matthew Barzal currently leads the team with seven points on the season. It looks like a great start for the second year forward. Additionally, both Robin Lehner and Thomas Greiss have been rocking in net both posting a 2.59 goals against average. Things seem to be looking up for coach Barry Trotz and the New York Islanders.

Injuries/Suspensions

Florida

Roberto Luongo is still healing from his MCL sprain but could potentially return this road trip.

Jaime McGinn is still recovering from back surgery.

Derek Mackenzie had shoulder surgery so his timetable for his return is unknown.

Mark Pysyk is still out with an upper-body injury, it is unknown if he will play in this game.

Michael Haley is still out due to personal issues.

New York

There are no players currently injured or suspended for the Islanders.

Projected lineups (according to NHL.com)

Florida

L1: Evgenii Dadonov-Aleksander Barkov-Nick Bjugstad

L2: Johnathan Huberdeau-Vincent Trocheck-Denis Malgin

L3: Frank Vatrano-Jared McCann-Mike Hoffman

L4: Troy Brouwer-Juho Lammiko-Colton Scevior

D1: Keith Yandle-Alexander Petrovic

D2: Michael Matheson-Aaron Ekblad

D3: Bogdan Kiselevich-Mackenzie Weegar

G1: James Reimer

G2: Michael Hutchinson

Scratches: Maxim Mamin

New York

L1: Andrew Ladd-Matthew Barzal-Jordan Eberle

L2: Anders Lee-Brock Nelson-Josh Bailey

L3: Matt Martin-Casey Cizikas-Cal Clutterbuck

L4: Anthony Beauvillier-Valtteri Filppula-Leo Komarov

D1: Nick Leddy-Ryan Pulock

D2: Thomas Hickey-Scott Mayfield

D3: Adam Pelech-Johnny Boychuk

G1: Robin Lehner

G2: Thomas Greiss

Scratches: Tom Khunhackl, Ross Johnston, Luca Sbisa

Social Media

Follow Jared on Twitter @JoeyGanzi

Photo Credit

Photo Courtesy of Doug Kerr

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