“Once he says he’s in, I say he’s in, he’s in,” Nolan said after Saturday morning’s pre-game skate. “If he says he wants to play, he’s going to play.”
DiPietro, who missed the final seven games of the regular season and the first game of the playoffs with a concussion, said he’s ready to play.
“I feel good, I did everything I normally would before a game,” DiPietro said. “I’m ready to play, but it’s Teddy’s call.”
DiPietro, the first overall pick in the 2000 NHL entry draft, tied an Islanders record with 32 victories this season. He went 32-19-9 with a 2.56 goals-against average and a .919 save percentage.
DiPietro watched Game 1 from the press box as the Islanders dropped a 4-1 decision to the Sabres. Rookie Wade Dubielewicz, who won the final four games of the regular season to get the Islanders into the playoffs, made 31 saves in the losing effort.