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After missing the playoffs
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Data: 14 maj 2019 - 03:50:21

EAST MEADOW Custom New York Rangers Jerseys , N.Y. (AP)for the second straight year, and eighth time in the last 11, the New York Islanders head into the offseason with much work to be done.The most important task is signing captain John Tavares, who is set to be a free agent this summer.Tavares has said all along he hopes to be back with the only franchise he&#8217;s played for, but doesn&#8217;t know what will happen. However, with the season having ended less than 48 hours ago, he needs to take a breather first.&#8221;Take some time to not even think about hockey for a few days,&#8221; Tavares said Monday. &#8221;And then prepare for the offseason and training, and obviously the contract will come up here as well.&#8221;Tavares, 27, just wrapped up the final year of a six-year, $33 million contract, and would be the top free agent available July 1. The face of the Islanders since they selected him No. 1 overall in the 2009 draft, Tavares had 37 goals and 47 assists this season, finishing a goal and an assist shy of the career highs he set in 2014-15.&#8221;This is where I hope to be and I&#8217;ve stated that,&#8221; he said. &#8221;Just have to take some time and figure out what I want to do.&#8221;Islanders co-owner Jon Ledecky and general manager Garth Snow have both repeatedly said they want Tavares to return, and Snow reiterated that Monday.&#8221;We want to be in a situation where he has the Stanley Cup in his hand, wearing an Islanders jersey, and we want him to retire as an Islander,&#8221; Snow said.Ledecky read a statement in which he declined to address the futures of any player, or the statuses of Snow and coach Doug Weight, saying the team was &#8221;committed to long-term success,&#8221; and defined that as &#8221;competing every year for the Stanley Cup and eventually winning a fifth ring.&#8221;He added: &#8221;For the past season , as owners we have failed. We sincerely apologize to our fans. We want to express that our ownership group is totally committed to winning and providing the resources to do just that.&#8221;The Islanders finished 35-37-10 despite getting off to a strong start in which they won 15 of their first 24 games.However, injuries to defensemen Calvin de Haan and Johnny Boychuk started them on a tailspin in which they lost 30 of their final 45 games (15-24-6).There were some bright spots, led by Mathew Barzal&#8217;s 22 goals and 63 assists that make him the leading candidate for the Calder Trophy as the league&#8217;s top rookie. Also, Anders Lee had the franchise&#8217;s first 40-goal season since Jason Blake in 2006-07, and Josh Bailey had career bests of 18 goals and 53 assists.Some other things to know as the Islanders head into the offseason:IMPROVING THE DEFENSEFinding a way to improve the defense needs to be the second priority this summer &#8211; after retaining Tavares. The Islanders finished eighth in the league in scoring with 261 goals, but gave up a league-worst 293. They were also last in shots allowed and penalty-killing,Nick Leddy had an unseemly minus-42 rating, the league&#8217;s worst since Pittsburgh&#8217;s Rico Fata (minus-46) in 2003-04. Calvin de Haan was lost for the season in December and is also set to be free agent. On the bright side, Ryan Pulock and Adam Pelech, both 23, established themselves as solid young defensemen.THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHTBarzal and Anthony Beauvillier, both 20, formed a solid second line with Jordan Eberle, 27, combining for 180 points to complement the top line of Lee-Tavares-Bailey (217).Eberle had 25 goals and 34 assists in his first season in New York, and Beauvillier had a breakout second season in the NHL with 21 goals and 15 assists.WHO&#8217;S IN GOAL?Thomas Greiss is the only goalie signed for next season, with Jaroslav Halak set to be an unrestricted free agent. Greiss dealt with an injury down the stretch and finished 13-8-2 with one shutout and a 3.82 goals-against average.Halak was 20-26-6 with a shutout and a 3.16 GAA in the final season of a four-year deal. The 32-year-old had a solid first season, going 38-17-4 with a 2.43 GAA in 2014-15, but totaled just 50 wins the last three years.SNOW&#8217;S JOBWith the Islanders having made the playoffs just four times in 12 years since Snow was hired as the GM, he was asked if he deserved to stay on the job.&#8221;Yeah,&#8221; he said. &#8221;When I took over this position it was a situation where it was an all-out rebuild. &#8230; Now we&#8217;re in a situation where we feel we can compete for a Stanley Cup.&#8221;You can go through the lineup and have a pretty common theme of successful stories of where we&#8217;ve built through the draft. And I think our prospect pool at this point in time is impressive as well.&#8221;HOME AND HOMEThe team&#8217;s struggles this season were punctuated by losses at Barclays Center, where they were 59-26-16 since moving to the Brooklyn arena before the 2015-16 season.However, they lost 15 of their final 22 games there to finish with a losing record on home ice for the first time since 2013-14.Now Ottawa Senators T-Shirts Authentic , the Islanders will be splitting home games between Barclays Center and the Nassau Coliseum &#8211; their former home &#8211; for at least the next three seasons until a new arena is built at Belmont Park.&#8212;-Follow Vin Cherwoo at; For Colin Campbell, going from Mike Keenan&#8217;s top assistant to head coach of the New York Rangers wasn&#8217;t a big move.&#8221;I just had to move 10 feet to another office,&#8221; Campbell said.Logistically it was simple, but in every other way it was an almost-impossible task. Campbell took over the Rangers after they ended a 54-year drought and paraded the Stanley Cup down Broadway because Keenan left in a contract dispute.It&#8217;s a similar situation to the one Todd Reirden is walking into after the Washington Capitals promoted him from associate to head coach to replace Barry Trotz mere weeks after winning the Cup. Reirden is just the fourth new coach in the past 30 years to assume control of a Stanley Cup champion, a unique opportunity that presents problems Campbell, Scotty Bowman and Dave Lewis know well from their experiences.Lewis succeeded Bowman after being his associate coach with the champion 2002 Detroit Red Wings, and Bowman stepped in for &#8221;Badger&#8221; Bob Johnson after he led the Pittsburgh Penguins to the Cup in 1991 and had to take a leave of absence to fight cancer. All three had to balance the opportunity of taking over with the expectation of following a Cup-winning coach and the ensuing pressure.&#8221;Besides replacing a legend, to be equal, you have to win the Stanley Cup, so it was a big challenge,&#8221; Lewis said. &#8221;I was looking forward to the challenge, actually, of taking over a team, taking over a team that won a Stanley Cup and try to accomplish the same thing. I knew it would be very difficult.&#8221;Or as Campbell pointed out: &#8221;You can only tie. You can&#8217;t do better. Tying&#8217;s pretty good. You have to win a Cup just tie your performance from a year before.&#8221;No pressure, Todd.Only Bowman &#8211; who already had five Cup rings from the Montreal Canadiens&#8217; 1970s dynasty &#8211; pulled it off and repeated. And even that was a different set of circumstances because as director of player development, Bowman only agreed to coach the Penguins until Johnson was able to resume coaching or succumbed to cancer.&#8221;We wanted to have him keep fighting for his life,&#8221; Bowman said. &#8221;When he passed away, we had not had a great start that second year. We had the Stanley Cup hangover, and the people that ran the team &#8211; the owners and that &#8211; they didn&#8217;t feel it was a good idea to put a guy in in November, early December. I only agreed to do it until one of those two things happened. But then when he passed away, they didn&#8217;t think it was easy for a young guy to come in that didn&#8217;t know the team. So I said, `OK I&#8217;ll finish the season.&#8217;Reirden is far more like Campbell and Lewis in that he was Trotz&#8217;s top assistant and the de-facto candidate to step in when change happened. Campbell and Lewis had plenty of experience and were familiar with players like Reirden, but neither had been an NHL head coach before and had to learn on the fly.&#8221;Being an assistant coach Ottawa Senators Hoodies Authentic , you communicate differently, you just organize things differently,&#8221; Lewis said. &#8221;You can&#8217;t do is you can&#8217;t change your personality. The players know you as an assistant coach. They know you as a human being and how you react to things at an assistant level. So I guess the biggest adjustment is how to react to things as a head coach. &#8230; When you&#8217;re a head coach, everything falls on your shoulders.&#8221;For some, that&#8217;s a natural fit. Bowman stepped right into the NHL with the expansion St. Louis Blues in 1967-68 and led them to the Cup Final three consecutive years.Nine rings later, it&#8217;s clear the legendary Bowman just had a knack for this thing that helped him win with three different teams.&#8221;When you&#8217;re an assistant coach, the thing is you&#8217;ve got to put your foot down right from the start,&#8221; Bowman said. &#8221;You&#8217;re no longer an assistant coach.&#8221;That&#8217;s just the beginning of the advice for Reirden, who at 47 has coached in the American Hockey League and spent eight years behind the bench as an assistant with Pittsburgh and Washington. When Trotz resigned and joined the New York Islanders, Reirden was the only candidate to be the Capitals&#8217; coach &#8211; and now it&#8217;s his time to figure it out.&#8221;It&#8217;s a challenge,&#8221; Lewis said. &#8221;There&#8217;s no easy head-coaching jobs in the National hockey League. He knows the team. He&#8217;s been with them when they&#8217;ve been successful. He&#8217;s been with them when they&#8217;ve stumbled and had some failures. Just be yourself is my only advice that I can give.&#8221;Campbell waited out a half-season lockout in 1994-95 and so badly wanted to win his head-coaching debut on banner-raising night &#8211; when he only found out after warmups captain Mark Messier would be in the lineup. Knowing a thing about pressure under the New York spotlight, Campbell hopes Reirden doesn&#8217;t pile up too much of it on himself.&#8221;There would be pressure on Barry if he came back,&#8221; Campbell said. &#8221;Don&#8217;t try to be like Barry. They were a goalpost from being down 3-0. They&#8217;re a good team, a deep team, but it&#8217;s tough to win the Cup. He knows that team, he knows those players. He doesn&#8217;t have to change anything. But he&#8217;s got to be Todd, not Barry or anybody else. He&#8217;s been around long enough. Just don&#8217;t put undue pressure on yourself, that&#8217;s all, because it&#8217;s tough.&#8221;&#8212;

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