Jack Capuano’s message is simple: We’ll just worry about what we can control, thank you very much.
The Isles, facing a chance to get back to the postseason for the second time in three years, had been flirting with an epic collapse. But the slate is now wiped clean.
Despite all the Islanders have accomplished this season, they are not ready. They are not in sync, nor are they consistent or building any sort of momentum heading into the postseason.
It happened so fast on Tuesday night, there wasn’t time to feel much of anything except total shock. The anger came later.
With only three games left in the regular season the Islanders are still trying to put a little “X” next to their names in the standings.
You want to become an elite contender? Go out and get a proven coach. Capuano’s done lots of good things with this club, but this is about as far as he can take them.
It’s very important to remain cognizant of the fact that the Isles are still a young team. I recognize that people get tired of hearing that, but it’s true nonetheless.
The Islanders have looked pretty good this season, the last couple of weeks notwithstanding. Lately, it’s been more of a rough go.
In the span of a week, one of the NHL’s top scoring offenses has gone in the tank. The hope of a division title has been replaced by a mad scramble to avoid having to go on the road to start the playoffs.
If you are expecting the Islanders to add some pieces for a run at the Stanley Cup you may end up being disappointed.
The Kyle Okposo injury? No problem. Tough loss to the Rangers at home? It’s forgotten about the very next game. There is no quit in this hockey club.
Peter Laviolette, Jon Cooper, Michel Therrien, Jack Capuano and Alain Vigneault have all done outstanding jobs this season and should be the leading candidates for NHL coach of the year.
While the Islanders are all but assured of a postseason berth, they’ve got quite a bit of holes to plug up. Their penalty kill and backup goalie situation are a mess — and that’s putting it nicely.
The Islanders are no longer about being a feel-good story or rising above expectations. What they have done so far is set the bar very high.
How good are the Islanders? We’re going to find out as they are set to begin a brutal seven-game road trip through Western Canada and points elsewhere.