New York at Washington 7pm Msg+2

New York Islander Fan Central | 12/04/2008 12:15:00 PM |

I decided to go with the good news to start this preview, welcome back Mike Sillinger.

Washington just lost their first game of the season on home ice to Florida with a lot of injuries in a game described as one they did not put in a lot of effort.

Bad news is even with these injuries this is a very good team. Former Islander Viktor Kozlov scored his fourth goal in the loss to Florida in what should be the only former Islander dressing.

Washington Post: Tarik El-Bashir has the Caps injury list includes seven players out or questionable including the players on long-term injured reserve.

* Sergei Fedorov, has missed 12 of the past 13 games with a sprained ankle but after but left practice early casting doubt on his status according to the writer.

* Mike Green (bruised shoulder) didn't practice but said he is aiming to return Saturday in Toronto.

* Alexander Semin (upper torso strain) also did not practice after suffering a setback Tuesday while shooting. He has missed nine games.

* Tom Poti (groin muscle pull) did not practice for a sixth consecutive day.

* John Erskine (mild concussion) also did not practice one day after skating with the team.

* Alex Ovechkin was given the day off to recover from an undisclosed nagging injury. Head coach Bruce Boudreau said there's a 99 percent chance he'll suit against the Islanders.

Brent Johnson is expected to start in goal.

From the Islanders side it's not looking very promising for Martinek out two-four weeks & Kyle Okposo confirmed out with the recalls of Fritz, Jackman and Pock apparently coming back despite clearing waivers.

All I do know is given the conference standings Islanders have to come out of this with two points against a very skilled club that can score but should give up some chances on defense with a beatable goaltender.

A team two games under five hundred cannot play win one, lose one hockey or at best they will be in a mix of five teams for one or two playoff spots before long.

Playoffs in this league mean about ninety five points which is twelve games over five hundred (low end) with a lot of ot losses, Islanders have very few ot losses.

The over/under for how many times Howie Rose mentions the boards/glass at whatever the building is called this year (Cap Centre downtown) starts at five.

Islanders have no time for rust, excuses about time off or anything. They need some goals and a sixty minute effort or it's not going to happen for them. Last time this team had days off the came out and were outplayed and it had little to do with the bus ride to Newark or Kevin Weekes.

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