I’m not someone who lives for opportunities to rip Garth Snow or Doug Weight (or to be honest, Mike Milbury or Don Maloney before them), nor am I a person who ever looks at his sports teams with much optimism. As a sports fan I’m used to disappointment and low expectations, and I see the architects of that disappointment as people who mean better but don’t know how to deliver it.
Given all that, however, even I am a little excited about next season now that both Lou Lamoriello and Barry Trotz are in the fold. Both have had their flaws in the NHL, but they’ve also accomplished a hell of a lot more than anyone in a similar position with the Islanders since Arbour and Torrey.
With Barzal emerging and Tavares (hopefully) still able to offer near-peak production, it’s nice to have them, finally, working under two guys who have a clear idea of what they hope to do.
We’ll have a classic Islanders Anxiety podcast up this morning, then a draft preview.
- Perhaps you heard, Lou landed his man. Like, in three days. Barry Trotz is the Islanders coach, and hopefully another lure for Tavares. [LHH | Islanders | Newsday | Athletic | Post]
- Trotz said he wants the team to be fast, organized and defensively responsible. Lou was a big draw. [LHH | Isles conference call audio]
- Next season the Islanders will play even more games, eight more, at Nassau Coliseum than previously announced. [Gov. Cuomo | Newsday | LHH] That’s part of the full schedule announcement for 2018-19. [Isles] But no derby games at the Coliseum next year. [Newsday]
- If you look at every coach in Islanders history, Trotz...fits in pretty highly. [LHH]
- Trotz and Kenny Albert used to be roommates. [Newsday]
- Does all this influence Tavares to stay? Dan updates the Encyclopedia. [LHH]
- The draft begins tonight. The beginning of Lou’s chance to remake the roster. [Newsday]
- Speaking of which, here are five kids the Isles could draft around 11 and 12. [Newsday]
- A look back at how the Trotz relationship with the Capitals got to a point where he could walk away. [NoVa Caps]
- Really well done, this: How other GMs would salute the Stanley Cup champion Capitals. [Japers’ Rink]
- Also really well done: An overview of the NHL draft and how it evolved to what it is today. [Defending Big D]
- From the awards: Taylor Hall’s MVP award was validation for him, another black mark on the Oilers. [TSN]
- Look out, Oilers fans! They are willing to deal the 10th overall pick for defense. [NBC Sports]
- Fun idea here: Western scout describes Brady Tkachuk, then Brady, his brother Matt and an ESPN draft guy respond to the scout. [ESPN]
- Don’t know what any of this says or means but it sounds pretty smart and insightful about evaluating and comparing scorers. [Hockey-Graphs]