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Islanders notes: Casey Cizikas day-to-day, Aatu Raty game-time decision vs. Panthers

Aatu Raty Islanders
Aatu Raty (Photo courtesy of Stefen Rosner/NYIHockeyNow)

Islanders head coach Lane Lambert revealed ahead of his team’s matchup on Friday against the Florida Panthers that fourth-line center Casey Cizikas is “day-to-day” with an upper-body injury.

Cizikas suffered the injury during the second period of Thursday night’s 5-3 loss to the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden. He did not return for the third period. 

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This comes on the same day that the Islanders announced that winger Kyle Palmieri and goaltender Semyon Varlamov were placed on injured reserve, retroactive to Dec. 16 and 17 respectively. They’ll be eligible to return for Tuesday’s game against the Pittsburgh Penguins. 

The Islanders proceeded to call up top prospect and center Aatu Raty alongside defenseman Parker Wotherspoon — the latter to potentially provide Lambert with another blue-line option after both Robin Salo and Sebastian Aho struggled on Thursday against the Rangers.

Both are game-time decisions Friday against the Panthers, though the buzz will certainly be around Raty to make his NHL debut and with it, potentially provide a spark to a sputtering offense. 

“He’s played really well in Bridgeport and he’s a 200-foot player,” Lambert said. “His compete level is very high so if he’s having success, it’ll translate here… I think there’s always a little bit of excitement in terms of from him and from us to see just exactly how it translates but we have full confidence in him.”

Raty has five goals and seven assists in 23 games with the Islanders’ AHL affiliate in Bridgeport — his first full season playing in North America. 

For more on the Islanders and Aatu Raty, visit AMNY.com