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The Tao of Trotz: It’s not always about hockey

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More words of wisdom from the Islanders coach, for outside the rink.

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Shannon Hogan - MSG Networks

Last night sucked. Losing the Rangers is never fun but as someone pointed out in the comments after the game, losing like that is basically the worst possible scenario for an Islanders fan. And with games this upcoming weekend against the Capitals, Hurricanes and - AGAIN? - the Rangers, the Islanders’ recent inconsistencies are making life a little less sunny.

But it’s Friday before a long weekend and it stinks to be in a bad mood. In times of trouble we can look once again at the steadying stoicism of Islanders coach Barry Trotz, who dropped some more life lessons on some kids he met before last night’s kick in the groin. While meeting youth players from Japan who are on Long Island to participate in the 12th annual Charles B. Wang Hope Cup tournament, the coach reminded everyone that sports are just one aspect of who we are as people.

“You can be a good hockey player, maybe, maybe not, but you can always be a good human. That’s a choice.”

That it is, coach. And it’s good to remember that after watching your team lose a heartbreaker with 20-something seconds left makes you want to throw your computer through a wall and start acting out the arcade classic Rampage, except in real life. Maybe, like, don’t do that.

The Hope Cup, which has been going on all week, is comprised of 10 teams, representing six different countries and is pretty damn cool for these kids.

It’s gonna be a white knuckle ride to the All Star Game. The Islanders’ 17-game point streak was a long time ago and other teams have crept up behind them. It’s tense and probably will be to the end of the season.

But remember: it’s just hockey.

(...he told himself repeatedly as he tossed and turned in his sleep...)

A few more life lessons from Coach Trotz:

“If we’re watching the game, we’re watching ourselves lose.” (10/30/18)

“When you have failure, you speak less and you listen more.” (4/15/19)

“From my past experience, when you’ve dug yourself a little bit of a hole and you dig yourselves out of that hole, I tell you what, you become a pretty strong team,” (4/30/19)

“You can’t fix what’s behind you.” (5/1/19)