Grabner a healthy scratch vs. Devils

March, 8, 2012
3/08/12
12:57
PM ET
After missing the past two games with the flu, Michael Grabner will be out of the lineup for the third straight Thursday. This time, however, the struggling forward will be a healthy scratch.

Grabner has had a disappointing season following last year's standout 34-goal rookie campaign. With only 15 goals through the first 66 games -- only one in the last 19 -- he'll watch a game from the press box as the Islanders attempt to record their third straight win against New Jersey.

"I haven't really had the season that people expected, that I expected from myself," Grabner said. "Hopefully that will help a little bit, to see the game form upstairs."

"We're in a playoff race. We're seven points out and they've won two in a row. I knew there was a possibility they'd want to switch it up," said Grabner, who was informed by coach Jack Capuano of the scratch before the team's optional skate. "We had a good talk this morning and I want the team to win."

Although it was rookie Anders Nilsson that recorded his first NHL shutout against the Devils Sunday, Evgeni Nabokov will get the start against New Jersey tonight.
Katie Strang covers the Rangers, Islanders and Devils for ESPNNewYork.com. She is a graduate of Michigan State University and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.
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