The New York Islanders got off to a customary slow start this season, but they have been building with a solid run in their last 10 games and they have risen to 3rd place in the Metropolitan Division of the Eastern Conference. That may be decent upturn, but the Islanders are not satisfied and they demonstrated that by acquiring defenseman Robert Bortuzzo from the St. Louis Blues.
The Islanders did not pay a stiff price for the blue liner, who is now in his 14th year in the NHL. The 34-year-old from Thunder Bay, Ontario has spent the last 10 seasons with the Blues. Prior to that, he was with the Pittsburgh Penguins for 4 years.
Bortuzzo is an old-school, defensive defenseman. He is not the kind of defenseman who is going to create exciting offensive plays with his stickhandling and dramatic passing. However, when it comes to playing the body, getting in front of shots and protecting the front of the net, Bortuzzo will get the job done.
Bortuzzo has never scored more than 4 goals or 13 points in any season. He reached that level in the 2017-18 season.
Robert Bortuzzo played a key role for the Blues the following season, when they won the only Stanley Cup in team history. He played in 17 games during their Stanley Cup run, and he scored 2 goals as they earned the Stanley Cup by beating the Boston Bruins in 7 games. Bortuzzo has played in 55 games during the postseason throughout his career, and those 2 goals represent the only time he has found the back of the net in the playoffs.
The Islanders have recorded points in 9 of their last 10 games with a record of 6-1-3 in that span.