Barry Trotz had seen enough out of Anthony Beauvillier.
After the Predators went ahead on Colton Sissons’ goal late in the first period on Thursday night, Trotz sat Beauvillier for the first 10 minutes of the second. Asked why after the 4-3 loss, the Islanders coach didn’t hold back.
“[Beauvillier] came back, they had full possession,” Trotz said. “He’s standing next to a [defenseman], decides to change. That D walks in and blasts it.
“That can’t happen. Beau has to raise his game. Not a lot of production. Lost too many battles in the last little while and that was sort of a tipping point for me that maybe you have to watch a little bit.”
Though Trotz has generally remained upbeat about the Islanders’ dry spells, Beauvillier evidently found the limit. He played just 10:55 in the game and finished with a shot on net and a giveaway.
On the season, the six-year veteran has three goals and four assists, but hasn’t recorded a point since Nov. 4. On Thursday, the line he played on with Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Kyle Palmieri consisted of three players who have all struggled to get on the scoresheet.
Though Pageau finally scored earlier this week, Palmieri has but one goal this year and was minus-three Thursday.
With the Islanders at 6-11-5, Trotz is no longer at the point where he can wait for things to fall into place. Yanking Beauvillier was a way of doing something, though it didn’t spark the Islanders as perhaps intended.
“We got the three goals, we should be able to lock it down hopefully,” Trotz said. “But we seem to be leaky at times.”
Austin Czarnik got on an NHL scoresheet for the first time since Oct. 24, 2019, with the Flames, scoring the game’s first goal on a breakaway feed from Oliver Wahlstrom.
“I think we were buzzing the last game and tonight I thought we came out with a good push to start,” Czarnik said. “[Kieffer] Bellows made a good play on the wall, made a good play to me.”
Despite the milestone, Czarnik was far from upbeat after the Islanders blew a lead in the game’s last seven minutes, giving up the game-winner with 11.5 seconds to go. Still, for the 28-year-old journeyman, it does mean something.
Thursday was his fourth game with the Islanders following his call-up. In 9:11 of ice time, Czarnik scored on his only shot on net.
Brock Nelson (lower body) and Casey Cizikas (COVID-19) were morning-skate participants Thursday, with Trotz saying both are “days away” from a return.
“They’re getting closer,” Trotz said. “And it was a morning skate, so there wasn’t grind or contact.”
Noah Dobson played his 100th NHL game Thursday night and scored his second goal of the season to give the Isles a 3-2 lead in the third period. He finished with a team-high four shots on goal.
Speaking to media pregame for the first time since recovering from COVID-19, Ross Johnston said he had some symptoms, but feels back to normal now. He went on to pick up his first point of the season in the loss, finishing with eight hits.