Thursday Daily Puck: The Sky Isn't Falling
Thursday Daily Puck: The Sky Isn't Falling

This article is part of our The Daily Puck series.

Around the Rink
All talk about the New York Islanders over the last week has been some variation of "The sky is falling! The sky is falling!"

The Isles have lost four straight at a crucial moment in the season. That has allowed them to be overtaken by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the standings, dropping from third place in the Metropolitan Division to a wild card spot.

Wednesday, the Islanders were able to snap their slump and grab a win over the Ottawa Senators. It was a bit of a slow game, but the Isles played even up and got the job done. They got production out of some key players like John Tavares and Brock Nelson, while getting a little help in net from an unexpected source (which we will get to in a bit).

So, maybe this was a blip, a bit of adversity before they're able to make a final push toward the end. Even if they continue to be the team we've seen, the sky isn't falling.

Projected Goalie Starters (all times Eastern)
For updates on the projected goalies later in the day, check our Projected Goalies Grid

Panthers (Roberto Luongo) at Bruins (Jonas Gustavsson), 7:00 PM
Devils (Scott Wedgewood) at Penguins (Marc-Andre Fleury), 7:00 PM
Hurricanes (Cam Ward) at Blue Jackets (Sergei Bobrovsky), 7:00 PM
Ducks (Frederik Andersen) at Maple Leafs (Garret Sparks), 7:30 PM
Canadiens (Ben Scrivens) at Red Wings (Petr Mrazek), 7:30 PM
Canucks (Ryan Miller) at Predators (Pekka Rinne), 8:00 PM
Flames (Niklas Backstrom) at Wild (Devan Dubnyk), 8:00 PM
Kings (Jonathan Quick) at Jets (Michael Hutchinson), 8:00 PM
Flyers (Steve Mason) at Avalanche (Semyon Varlamov), 9:00 PM
Stars (Kari Lehtonen) at Coyotes (Louis Domingue), 10:00 PM
Oilers (Cam Talbot) at Sharks (Martin Jones), 10:30 PM

Injury News For Teams Playing Thursday

Florida Panthers
Derek MacKenzie, C (foot) - has not been traveling with the team
Dave Bolland, C (lower body) - is on IR
Erik Gudbranson, D (lower body) - is not traveling with the team
Willie Mitchell, D (lower body) - is also not traveling with the team

Boston Bruins
Chris Kelly, RW (fractured femur) - has skated, but isn't ready to play again
Zac Rinaldo, C (suspension) - has still not started serving his five-game suspension

New Jersey Devils
Patrik Elias, LW (knee) - isn't returning Thursday
Michael Cammalleri, LW (hand) - is out for the season
Jordin Tootoo, RW (upper body) - is expected to be re-evaluated this week
Cory Schneider, G (knee) - won't play until next week at the earliest
Jiri Tlusty, LW (wrist) - is still sidelined
Tyler Kennedy, LW (lower body) - isn't traveling with the team for Thursday's game
Jon Merrill, D (upper body) - is a couple weeks from a return
David Schlemko, D (upper body) - is unlikely to play this week
Jacob Josefson, C (wrist) - won't play Thursday
John Moore, D (knee) - will be a game-time decision Thursday

Pittsburgh Penguins
Brian Dumoulin, D (undisclosed) - will be a game-time decision Thursday
Beau Bennett, RW (upper body) - is also a game-time decision
Scott Wilson, LW (lower body) - will require surgery, the team recently announced
Kevin Porter, C (ankle) - is on IR
Ben Lovejoy, D (upper body) - is questionable
Evgeni Malkin, C (upper body) - could miss the rest of the weekend

Carolina Hurricanes
James Wisniewski, D (knee) - has skated, but won't return Thursday
Andrej Nestrasil, C (back) - is done for the year
Justin Faulk, D (ankle) - didn't play Tuesday, but is hopeful that he will return before the season ends

Columbus Blue Jackets
Jack Johnson, D (shoulder) - is done for the season
David Clarkson, RW (lower body) - didn't suit up Tuesday
Curtis McElhinney, G (knee) - underwent season-ending surgery
Nick Foligno, LW (illness) - didn't play Tuesday

Anaheim Ducks
Nate Thompson, C (lower body) - hopes to return Thursday
Chris Stewart, RW (jaw) - remains out
David Perron, LW (shoulder) - could miss an extended period of time
Sami Vatanen, D (upper body) - isn't joining the team for the road trip

Toronto Maple Leafs
Leo Komarov, LW (lower body) - could be sidelined for a while
Viktor Loov, D (undisclosed) - was ruled out Tuesday
Nikita Soshnikov, LW (upper body) - has been sidelined, but is questionable currently
Byron Froese, C (hand) - is sidelined
James van Riemsdyk, LW (foot) - is done for the year
Raffi Torres, LW (knee) - has been shut down for the season
Brad Boyes, RW (upper body) - has been ruled out Thursday
Joffrey Lupul, LW (abdomen) - is done for the year
Matt Hunwick, D (hernia) - is also done for the year
Stephane Robidas, D (knee) - has no timeline under which he plays this season

Montreal Canadiens
P.K. Subban, D - Subban (neck), who was considered an option to return Thursday, has now been ruled out for the contest in Detroit. (3/23/2016)
Mark Barberio, D - Barberio has been ruled out indefinitely due to concussion symptoms. (3/18/2016)
David Desharnais, C - Desharnais (foot) isno longer listed on injured reserve. (3/23/2016)
Brendan Gallagher, RW - Gallagher (groin) will be out for a period of 2-to-3 weeks. (3/8/2016)
Victor Bartley, D - Bartley is considered day-to-day with a lower-body injury. (3/20/2016)
Brian Flynn, C - Flynn will miss 6-to-8 weeks due to a lower-body injury, TSN's John Lu reports. (2/9/2016)
Sven Andrighetto, RW - Andrighetto (upper body) could return to the lineup Thursday against the Red Wings, John Lu of TSN Montreal reports. (3/23/2016)
Daniel Carr, LW - Carr will miss the next three months with a right knee injury, Dave Stubbs of NHL.com reports. (1/26/2016)
Carey Price, G - Price (leg) practiced once again in full equipment, taking shots from goalie coach Stéphane Waite on Tuesday, the Montreal Gazette reports. (3/9/2016)
Jeff Petry, D - Petry (lower body) underwent sports hernia surgery on Wednesday and will be out at least 12 weeks, Dhiren Mahiban of The Canadian Press reports. (3/9/2016)
Tom Gilbert, D - Gilbert had surgery on his left knee Wednesday and is expected to need six months to recover. (2/25/2016)
Detroit Red Wings
Drew Miller, LW - Miller (lower body) will be out for 4-6 months after undergoing surgery to reconstruct his left ACL. (1/19/2016)

Vancouver Canucks
Alexander Edler, D (leg) - is out for the year
Jannik Hansen, RW (ribs) - hopes to return Thursday
Brandon Prust, LW (ankle) - has been shut down for the year
Brandon Sutter, C (jaw) - is out for the remainder of the season
Yannick Weber, D (upper body) - did not play Tuesday
Luca Sbisa, D (upper body) - could be approaching a return soon
Derek Dorsett, RW (undisclosed) - is questionable for Thursday's game
Chris Tanev, D (back) - did not play Tuesday
Sven Baertschi, LW (undisclosed) - did not practice Wednesday
Markus Granlund, C (upper body) - did not play Tuesday
Daniel Sedin, LW (undisclosed) - did not finish practice Wednesday
Radim Vrbata, RW (knee) - has been shut down for the year

Nashville Predators
Paul Gaustad, C (upper body) - it's not yet clear when Gaustad will return
Gabriel Bourque, LW (upper body) - has been recalled to the NHL
Anthony Bitetto, D (lower body) - was ruled out Monday

Calgary Flames
Ladislav Smid, D (upper body) - remains out
Karri Ramo, G (knee) - is done for the year
Dennis Wideman, D (tricep) - won't play again this year
Deryk Engelland, D (personal) - has been ruled out of Thursday's game

Minnesota Wild
Ryan Carter, LW (upper body) - is questionable at best
Jason Pominville, RW (lower body) - will be a game-time decision

Los Angeles Kings
Marian Gaborik, RW (knee) - could play again during the regular season, but it won't be Thursday
Kris Versteeg, RW (foot) - is day-to-day
Matt Greene, D (shoulder) - is out for the season
Jordan Nolan, RW (back) - is out indefinitely
Tanner Pearson, LW (personal) - wasn't a part of Tuesday's game and is a question mark for Thursday

Winnipeg Jets
Nikolaj Ehlers, LW (eye) - could return Thursday
Toby Enstrom, D (knee) - is out
Mathieu Perreault, C (concussion) - is out indefinitely
Anthony Peluso, RW (shoulder) - is done for the year after surgery
Joel Armia, RW (lower body) - could return Thursday
Bryan Little, C (head) - is done for the year
Mark Stuart, D (upper body) - remains on IR

Philadelphia Flyers
Michael Del Zotto, D (wrist) - won't play again this season
Michal Neuvirth, G (knee) - won't return until the postseason

Colorado Avalanche
Jesse Winchester, LW (concussion) - remains on IR
Matt Duchene, C (knee) - is out for the rest of the week
Eric Gelinas, D (elbow) - is out indefinitely
Nathan MacKinnon, C (knee) - has been ruled out of Thursday and Saturday's games
Ben Street, C (chest) - is out
Brad Stuart, D (back) - is out

Dallas Stars
Kris Russell, D (lower body) - missed Tuesday's game
Jason Demers, D (shoulder) - will miss the rest of the regular season
Tyler Seguin, C (Achilles) - will miss 3-to-4 weeks
Mattias Janmark, C (upper body) - could be back soon

Arizona Coyotes
Anders Lindback, G (Achilles) - has been shut down
Jarred Tinordi, D (suspension) - continues to serve a 20-game suspension
Joe Vitale, C (concussion) - is not playing again this season

Edmonton Oilers
Andrew Ference, D (hip) - is done for the year
Benoit Pouliot, LW (shoulder) - is out indefinitely
Adam Pardy, D (hand) - is unlikely to play Thursday
Eric Gryba, D (knee) - is out "long-term"
Oscar Klefbom, D (infection) - isn't likely to play again this season
Patrick Maroon, LW (illness) - didn't play Tuesday
Brandon Davidson, D (lower body) - is out long-term

San Jose Sharks
Matt Tennyson, D (concussion) - has skated, but hasn't been cleared to return
Matthew Nieto, LW (hand) - is out
Marc-Edouard Vlasic, D (lower body) - will miss at least another week

Hot
Erik Karlsson, D, OTT — The magnitude of Karlsson's offensive output this season is sometimes being lost. Yes, he's getting credit for a good year and is getting Norris talk, but he's putting up points at a historic rate. He's on pace for 82 points, something a defenseman hasn't done since the 1995-96 season. He's also on pace for 68 assists, which would be the 24th most assists by a defenseman in a single season. That's only been done once since the 1994-95 season. There hasn't been a better defensive play for fantasy in many years. Though his attention is burying deeper that Brent Burns is doing some equally amazing things.


Derek Stepan, C, NYR — He hasn't always been at the top of his game this season, but he's come up big when the Rangers have needed him. Wednesday he had a goal and two assists, along with three shots (he has five straight games with at least three shots). There have been some short droughts, but since February 10, he has eight goals and 20 points in 21 games.

Cold
Ryan Strome, RW, NYI — It was supposed to be Strome's moment to breakout. This was his year. He's gotten the ice time and the teammates. However, it's simply not happening. He hasn't registered a point in seven games. Over the last 17 games he has one goal and no assists. He has one shot or fewer in 11 of those matches. After posting 17 goals and 50 points last season, his eight goals and 24 points is a massive step down from expectations.

Recommended Pickup
J.F. Berube, G, NYI — He hasn't played much – this season or in his career – but when he's seen time in 2016 he has been on top of his game. He may wind up finding his way into more action than expected. Jaroslav Halak is done for the regular season. Ostensible backup Thomas Greiss has had a great season and has the chance to prove he's a NHL starter. But he needs breaks and Berube has proved himself up to the challenge. Coach Jack Capuano turned to Berube on Wednesday and he stopped 22 of 23 shots for the win. In four games in 2016 he has a .944 save percentage. He has likely at least earned another start.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dustin Nelson
Dustin Nelson is a writer based out of NYC. His fantasy team is full of loafers.
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