NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Islanders added a forward at Monday's trade deadline to create some more depth. They've somehow ended up with less forward depth than before, thanks to a strangely timed injury revelation and now a suspension.
Matt Martin was hit with a one-game ban by the NHL for his kneeing major on Stars defenseman Trevor Daley just 1:48 into Tuesday's 3-2 overtime loss in Dallas. Martin practiced with his teammates here on Wednesday, had his phone hearing with the league's Player Safety Department and will now miss tonight's game against the Predators.
Also missing is Tyler Kennedy, the forward the Isles acquired from the Sharks on Monday for a seventh-round pick. Kennedy was sent to Long Island for further evaluation on an upper-body injury he reported to the team barely an hour before the puck dropped on Tuesday.
"It definitely caught me off-guard," Jack Capuano said after practice. "He expressed he couldn't play."
There was no thought to voiding the trade as there didn't seem to the Islanders that there was any effort to conceal Kennedy's injury by the Sharks. Kennedy missed a month, from Dec. 7-Jan. 10, with a shoulder injury and had been in and out of the lineup since, though listed as a healthy scratch when he didn't play.
So instead of having an extra forward, the Islanders are a forward short of 12 as of now. A potential reinforcement was scheduled to arrive from Long Island Wednesday night: Casey Cizikas, who has missed the last eight games with a lower-body injury.
Cizikas skated the past two days along with fellow injured reservist Kyle Okposo back in New York.
"He's had 3-4 days of conditioning," Capuano said. "He's a possibility for us [Thursday night]."
Right now, Cizikas is the only possibility to round out the forward group. Capuano does have eight healthy defensemen on the trip, so Brian Strait or Matt Donovan could dress as a seventh defenseman.
Either way, the Islanders will not be anywhere near optimal strength for the game with the Predators, who still lead the NHL with 89 points but have lost four straight.
Notes & quotes:Capuano said goalie Michal Neuvirth would likely get more work than just in the four sets of back-to-back games that remain. "He's going to get some playing time and we don't want to overwork anyone," he said . . . Okposo skated on Long Island for a third consecutive day. If he continues to progress, he should join the team's practice late next week when the Isles return home.