Cizikas, who was in visible pain after blocking a shot during Thursday’s loss to the Boston Bruins, did not practice with the Islanders on Friday. The team also called up forward Colin McDonald on emergency recall.
Head coach Jack Capuano called Cizikas’s absence a “maintenance day.” Cizikas will likely make the trip to Detroit with the rest of his teammates, but who will be in the lineup on Saturday is unclear.
Colin McDonald’s presence would suggest that Cizikas might not play, but the Islanders were likely going to call up an extra forward regardless. With Both Kyle Okposo and Eric Boulton placed on injured reserve on Tuesday, the Isles were only left with 12 healthy forwards.
“We’re going on the road and a few guys got some bumps and bruises,” Capuano said. “So we just want to make sure we have an extra player.”
McDonald spent the morning skating on the wing of Brock Nelson and Michael Grabner. Capuano moved Ryan Strome to fourth line center to take Cizikas’s spot.
If McDonald plays on Saturday, it will be the first time since he's suited up for the Islanders on October 21 against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
"If he plays you know what you're getting," Capuano said about McDonald. "He played with us last year. He understands the system, understands the way we need him to play and he's a hard nose guy. He's gone down to Bridgeport and done everything we asked him to do.
"...If he gets the opportunity I know he'll go in and work hard for us."
Below are the lines from Friday's practice at Nassau Coliseum:
Josh Bailey-John Tavares-Mikhail Grabovski
Anders Lee-Frans Nielsen-Nikolay Kulemin
Michael Grabner-Brock Nelson-Colin McDonald
Cal Clutterbuck-Ryan Strome-Matt Martin