Ted Nolan is an excellent NHL coach? Really? Excellent?
1. He fucked up something and got booted out of Buffalo. Things turned out pretty well with Lindy Ruff at the helm.
2. He's "blackballed" for what seems like eternity, and returns to the Islanders, a team for which he had to know he wouldn't be icing a Stanley Cup contender in the near future. The team sneaks into the playoffs. Good coaching job? Sure. Excellent coaching job? No.
3. The Islanders finally realize they can't get the highest quality free agents to sign on the Island, a side effect of the new CBA. Some fans are happy when GM Garth Snow decides to pursue a rebuild and stock the team with prospects. (hey, got any worn out "used to be the backup goalie" jokes? Because I think there are a few guys coaching and serving as NHL GMs who used to fucking play. Sure, he had no experience. It's overrated. I mean it. And someday, I'll back that up with conveniently arranged evidence.)
The coach doesn't seem to buy into this.
Go to work tomorrow and tell your boss, his boss, or the president/CEO of the company you don't buy into their business/academic/corporate philosophy. Then tell a newspaper. See what happens.
Only Islanders fans (maybe the Leafs Nation too) could turn Ted Nolan into the NHL's most respected victim. His coaching resume is thin, and he has shown he cannot work with other people in the game. Mike Brophy is wrong. Islanders Army is wrong. Ted Nolan was not an excellent coach last year. And he wasn't the year before. He was a decent, serviceable coach. He played Andy Hilbert like he was Marian Hossa.
Yeah, Garth Snow hasn't given him the pieces he needs to compete for a Cup. Too fucking bad. That's why it's called a rebuild. Last year was a waiting year. The kids weren't ready for the NHL, so you sign cheap stop-gap veterans to fill the roster until the kids can come up -- maybe in the second half, maybe the next year. This year, you bring them up, find out who can play, sign them, then fill in your holes next year in free agency if you can. It's a simple formula. I'm glad Snow is sticking to it.
I am not confident it will result in something spectacular, but this plan is better than no plan, or Mike Milbury's plan.
But you cannot tell me this is some great loss. Peter Laviolette was a better coach.
Maybe this is a franchise in disarray (maybe not maybe, it is), but having the guts to get rid of someone who won't buy into the organizational philosophy is not your evidence. Now stop whining and be happy this team is trying something that appears to be a plan.