NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — A legend has left us.
Al Arbour, the bespectacled gentleman of a coach who molded a young and talented New York Islanders franchise into an NHL dynasty that won four straight Stanley Cups in the early 1980s, has died. He was 82.READ MORE: Sources: Suspect In Shooting Of NYPD Officers Had Multiple Weapons, Including AR-15 With 20 Rounds Hidden Under Mattress
The Islanders confirmed Arbour’s death in a release issued Friday afternoon. Arbour had been in declining health, battling Parkinson’s disease and dementia, and was living in Florida.
Beginning in 1973-74, Arbour led the Isles to 15 playoff appearances and won 119 playoff games — an NHL record with one team — over 19 seasons. His 740 career regular-season wins with the Islanders are the most with one NHL team.
“Al will always be remembered as one of, if not the greatest coaches ever to stand behind a bench in the history of the National Hockey League,” Islanders President and general manager Garth Snow said. “From his innovative coaching methods, to his humble way of life away from the game, Al is one of the reasons the New York Islanders are a historic franchise.”