Islanders fire Barry Trotz after missing playoffs
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Barry Trotz was sacked as New York Islands coach on Monday, with general manager Lu Lamorillo saying he felt the team needed a new voice.
The first to lose his job after four seasons with Trotsky Islanders and without a play-off appearance. The 59-year-old, who ranks among the most successful coaches in NHL history and won the Stanley Cup with Washington in 2018, led the islanders to the Eastern Conference finals in each of the previous two years before losing to defending champions Tampa Bay.
Lamoriello declined to explain why he felt “a new voice” was necessary.
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The 79-year-old longtime hockey executive said in a conference call, “I’d rather not go into any reason because that’s the information I have and it’s my job to experience this kind of decision making.” “These are not questions that I will answer as far as I think. It is clear that I thought a lot to make this kind of decision.”
A series of events outside Trotsky’s control contributed to the islanders’ absence from the playoffs this year. When their new yard was coming to an end, they opened the season on a 13-game road trip and their season was derailed due to coronavirus-related absences and injuries.
Lamorillo says the choice to move on from Trotsky was not initially made with what happened last season. “It’s definitely a business decision as far as hockey is concerned and winning,” he said.
Trotsky had one year left on his contract, which would put him in the same situation as the Capitals. They decided not to renew Trotsky’s contract despite the championship in the summer of 2018 and released him.
A few days later, he joins the islanders, who hire Lamorielo in charge of a franchise that has not won a championship since the beginning of the 1980s dynasty. New York went 152-102-34 in the regular season and 28-21 in the playoffs under Trots, the organization’s most success in more than two decades.
Lamorillo said the status of Trotsky’s contract was not involved in his decision. A message sent to Trotsky’s agent for comment was not immediately returned.
Trots could immediately be candidates for vacancies in Philadelphia, Detroit and Winnipeg, and others open because of his availability. Joining the flyers, Trotsky will be placed in the metropolitan area, while the Jetras will represent a return home for the Manitoba Natives.
Trots coached the Nashville Predators in their first 15 seasons, helping them reach the playoffs seven times. His 914 regular-season ranks third among coaches in NHL history.
The islanders begin a coaching search with the franchise in the middle of the competition window. Asked what he was looking for in a replacement, Lamorillo said he could not answer specifically and added there was no timeline.
Lamorillo said the players were not consulted about the shooting, which was known only to the owners before the Trotsky broke the news on Monday morning.
“These kinds of decisions are made to move forward,” Lamorillo said. “We have with this group – and they are now on notice – that the new voice is necessary for our success, in my opinion. And unfortunately or fortunately, my opinion is that these decisions must be made.”
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