Preseason Ponderings! Guest: Andrew Gross, Newsday

October 2, 2023
Posted in Show Recap
October 2, 2023 Ava Salti

Sean Cuthbert and Stefen Rosner are at Blue Line Deli to discuss all things Islanders with Newsday reporter Andrew Gross. 

4:35- Sean asks Stefen and Andrew Gross about how the lineup could potentially shake out. Andrew believes Lane Lambert likes Anders Lee with JG Pageau on the third line. Simon Holmstrom has been skating on Bo Horvat’s left wing, with Mat Barzal on the right, which could be an interesting opportunity for the young Swede. Also, it’s unlikely Kyle Palmieri is ready for opening night. 

7:30- The guys dive into Anders Lee’s potential presence on the third line, which could spread out the scoring throughout the lineup. Pushing Anders Lee down the lineup could open up spots for Oliver Wahlstrom in the top six. 

11:00- Sean asks Stefen and Andrew about Wahlstrom’s standing in the lineup after two up and down seasons. They also discuss the emergence of Julien Gauthier in training camp. 

“[Horvat and Barzal] just seem to create every shift. I think this is the dynamic duo that the Islanders have been longing for.” 

– Stefen Rosner on Bo Horvat and Mat Barzal’s full-season impacts

14:50- The boys talk about who could be the best fit alongside Horvat and Barzal. Holmstrom had a lot of missed chances in the prior night’s preseason game, proving that maybe there is a better fit with more of a scoring touch. As sound as Holmstrom is defensively, it is tempting to see what Pierre Engvall or Palmieri could do there.

19:25- Sean asks the boys what the “dynamic duo” of Horvat and Barzal looks like. Stefen and Andrew agree that Barzal looks much more comfortable and relaxed, on and off the ice. Horvat also looks more comfortable and settled into Long Island. 

25:10- Sean asks Stefen and Andrew what they think about the top four defenseman for this upcoming season. Lambert split up Adam Pelech and Ryan Pulock, putting Pelech with Noah Dobson and Pulock with Alexander Romanov. The pairing of Pulock and Romanov looked fantastic in the latter half of the season. Pelech and Dobson would be a top pairing, and it would mean a lot of trust is being placed on Dobson to play heavy even strength minutes. 

29:00- Sean asks the boys about the bottom pairing, and whether Samuel Bolduc has a legitimate chance to secure the number six spot on defense over Sebastian Aho

31:40- Sean and the boys discuss the new looks on the power play. Lambert echoed the same concern about zone entries, which was the biggest problem on the man-advantage last year. 

36:10- Sean asks Stefen and Andrew about how the team’s structure looks in the second season under Lane Lambert. Andrew echoes the same thing that Ethan Sears commented on our last show, which is about how much more comfortable Lambert looks in his role of leading behind the bench. Stefen brings up the new emphasis on adding speed to Lane’s structure. Each line – Horvat, 1st; Engvall, 2nd; Gauthier, 3rd – had a new element of speed. 

41:30- Sean asks the boys about the last three preseason games and who they expect Lane Lambert to throw out there as his lineup. Andrew and Stefen believe he’ll put out an mostly-NHL roster with a prospect here and there. 

43:30- Sean double checks with Stefen about any prospects who could make a push into the NHL lineup. Andrew wonders whether Bolduc or Sebastian Aho will be the number six defenseman. 

46:00- Hero of the Week!

50:00- Questions Brewin!

Catch Hockey Night in New York with hosts Sean Cuthbert and Stefen Rosner live from Floored Media in Rockville Centre Sunday nights at 8PM ET throughout the season.