UNIONDALE, N.Y. — The Islanders won game 4, but lost Andrew MacDonald in the process.
MacDonald left in the middle of the game with what the team categorized as an upper body injury. Newsday is reporting that he broke his hand and that he will miss the remainder of the postseason.
The 26-year-old defenseman has been part of the shutdown duo, with Travis Hamonic, who have been put out against the penguins top lines. MacDonald has logged over 20 minutes in the games prior to game 4 and in game 3 he saw 30:21 of ice time.
“He’s a big loss for us, I’m not going to lie to you,” Hamonic said after the game. “That’s a guy that plays tough, tough minutes and does so many little things right that maybe a lot of people don’t notice. Obviously as my partner he helps me out a lot on the ice. I think we all have to adjust and I think for the most part we did a pretty good job.”
Islander head coach Jack Capuano acknowledged the magnitude of losing the defenseman referred to as “A-Mac” by the guys in the locker room, but sees his an opportunity for someone else to step up.
“He leads in a lot of categories. Minutes, top line defenseman against top lines for the opposition, blocked shots. But we have some depth on this team. We have good guys, good character on this team and it just gives somebody else an opportunity to step in for the next game,” he said.
Hamonic noted how MacDonald has “made his job easier” on defense, but also echoed similar comments about the open spot as an opportunity for another person to make an impact.
“He’s made my job a lot easier for a couple years now,” Hamonic said. “That’s a big blow. Like I said you don’t realize all the little things he does properly and correctly until he’s not out there. And he eats up a lot of minutes as well…but it gives an opportunity for someone else to step up and try to play a big role.”