It’s been a busy 24 hours in New York Islanders’ country. Not only did the Islanders notch their 11th victory of the season Monday night against the Ottawa Senators, but former Islanders fourth overall pick, goaltender Roberto Luongo was also inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Netminder Semyon Varlamov stood tall as he has proven that his struggles in 2021-22 were left in the past, with his play backing up general manager Lou Lamoriello’s belief in him.
On Tuesday, an ESPN article on Johnny Gaudreau hit the virtual papers, with a portion of the piece discussing the booing of no. 13 when the Columbus Blue Jackets were on Long Island on Saturday night. And then, at 2 PM, the New York Islanders placed forward Nikita Soshnikov on waivers.
Monday night, Sebastian Aho was high-sticked by Ottawa Senators Mathieu Joseph which resulted in a two-minute penalty.
The NHL’s Department of Player Safety fined Joseph $5,000.
Let’s dive in, starting with the latest in the Jonny Gaudreau saga.
Gaudreau Never Spoke to Islanders This Summer
On Saturday night, Jonny Gaudreau heard the boos reign down from the UBS crowd every time he touched the puck. This summer, the Islanders were believed to be in play for the 29-year-old superstar. After the Philadelphia Flyers, his childhood team failed to clear enough salary cap space, it seemed that the New Jersey Devils and the New York Islanders, per the national reports, were the two teams left to battle it out.
But then the Columbus Blue Jackets swooped in and ‘stole’ the asset, signing him to a seven-year, $68.25 million deal ($9.75 M AAV).
Per Johnny Gaudreau in an interview with ESPN’s Emily Kaplan, the New York Islanders never reached out to him this past summer, which is why he did not understand the booing.
“I was talking to my coach after the third shift, and I was like, ‘I don’t get it,’” Gaudreau said. “I didn’t talk to [the Islanders] once throughout the whole free agency.”
Did the Islanders truly not reach out to Gaudreau’s camp at all?
That seems to be the case.
Varlamov Showing Why He Was Kept
Despite Ilya Sorokin heading into the 2022-23 season as the New York Islanders’ no. 1 netminder, there was no debate that Semyon Varlamov would still have to play a critical role if the Islanders were going to get back to the postseason.
Early on, Varlamov refound his game, the game we saw from the 2019-20 season when he was one of the best goaltenders in the league.
n the 4-2 win over the Ottawa Senators on Monday night, Semyon Varlamov was brilliant as he turned aside 36 of 38 shots that came his way, including 11 of 12 high-danger shots. He earned his fourth win of the season in six starts, a number he did not reach until his 18th start last season.
Through six games, Varlamov owns a 2.77 GAA with a .920 SV% and a 2.76 GSAA. He’s also stopped 52 of 61 high-danger shots, which is good enough for an .852 HDSV%.
Soshnikov Lands on Waivers, Who Gets Called Up (If Anyone)?
On Tuesday, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported that the New York Islanders have placed forward Nikita Soshnikov on waivers. The 28-year-old Russian had no points in three games with New York, with four shots on goal, eight hits, and a few takeaways in 9:56 minutes per game.
With Nikita Soshnikov on waivers, the New York Islanders will have a roster spot whether he clears or is claimed by Wednesday at 2 PM ET.
So who will New York Islanders general manager Lou Lamoriello be calling up from the Bridgeport Islanders, their AHL affiliate?
The likely answer, Simon Holmstrom.
Roberto Luongo Heads to the Hall
At 7:30 PM ET on Monday night, six players were immortalized in the National Hockey League Hall of Fame. Along with Daniel Alfredsson, Henrik, and Daniel Sedin, Riikka Sallinen, Herb Carnegie, former New York Islanders defenseman Roberto Luongo.
The Bridgeport Islanders have struggled for various reasons to keep the winning up.
Through four November games, Bridgeport is 2-1-2-0.
Bridgeport has not announced their injuries, but Grant Hutton has not played since Oct. 29, and Chris Terry has not played since Nov. 1. With both out of the lineup, the AHL Islanders are 1-0-3-0 this month.