Two games was just enough for Matt Donovan to gain some perspective. The Islanders rookie defenseman returned from his short stint as a healthy scratch to play well in Thursday’s 3-2 home win over the Oilers. After the team’s mandatory off day Friday Donovan was expected to be back in the lineup on Saturday night when the Hurricanes come to the Coliseum. The 23-year-old made the team out of training camp and played assertively in the first three games of the season showing coach Jack Capuano that his offensive instincts are not completely detached from his defensive responsibility. Then came Oct. 11 in Chicago when Donovan had his first bad NHL game a match in which the defending Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks made him look overmatched and overwhelmed. “He struggled” Capuano said after that game. “There’s no question.” So what the coach did was sit Donovan for two straight games as the team went 0-1-1 and missed his ability to push the play and join the rush. Donovan got back in on Thursday and looked right at home logging three shots on goal while playing 13:32 including 2:07 on the power play.
Rookie defenseman Donovan steps up for Islanders
New York Post | Oct 19