Islanders injury onslaught continues: Robert Bortuzzo placed on IR

Islanders UBS Arena
UBS Arena/Dennis DaSilva

The New York Islanders lost yet another defenseman due to injury, announcing on Wednesday that veteran blueliner Robert Bortuzzo has been placed on injured reserve due to a lower-body injury. 

The 34-year-old played in 11 games with the team since being acquired from the St. Louis Blues — a move made out of necessity due to the injury issues experienced in defense. 

Adam Pelech, the team’s top defensive defenseman, has been on long-term injured reserve (LTIR) since Nov. 25 due to an upper-body injury. The team also placed Ryan Pulock on LTIR on Dec. 30 after suffering a lower-body injury on Dec. 7. Scott Mayfield and Sebastian Aho also were shelved on IR for considerable stretches, though both were activated off that list in December. 

The Islanders also claimed veteran defenseman Mike Reilly off waivers from the Florida Panthers to keep the blue line afloat amidst the rash of injuries. 

In a corresponding move, New York also recalled goaltender Ken Appleby from its AHL affiliate in Bridgeport. The move doesn’t necessarily bode well for veteran backup Semyon Varlamov, who left Tuesday’s 5-4 loss to the Colorado Avalanche early because of an undisclosed injury.

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