The Islanders' woes increased (yes, it's possible) Tuesday with the team announcing defenseman Mike Mottau will miss the remainder of the season, requiring surgery on his right hip.
Goalie Rick DiPietro was also placed on injured reserve with swelling in his right knee. The oft-injured stopper missed his first game of the season Dec. 18, yielding the crease to Nathan Lawson. DiPietro has posted a 4-6-4 record this season to go along with his 3.68 GAA and a .880 save percentage.
Mottau had three assists this season, but hadn't played since Nov. 21. In terms of Gabriel Desjardins' CORSI ratings, relative to the rest of the Islanders, Mottau was the team's second best defenseman behind James Wisniewski.
The injury to Mottau also deprives the Islanders of a trade asset they may have been able to spun off around the deadline for a low-prospect or draft pick. Teams are always shopping for affordable defensemen down the stretch and Mottau's experience and cheap price tag ($800K this season and next) might have made him a reasonably attractive commodity.