Roy39s choice a natural one for Lamoriello

Roy's choice: a natural one for Lamoriello

Lou Lamoriello just suffered a serious blow. The hiring of Patrick Roy as head coach of the Islanders will create great excitement in the New York hockey community. Aside from the time they monopolized the Stanley Cup for four straight seasons, the Islanders have always played in the shadow of the Rangers. The same goes for the Devils. Roy's arrival will give the Islanders visibility and credibility.

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Lamoriello made the gesture that the Canadian and the Senators had not dared to make in recent years. In the case of the Habs, it has to be said that Martin St-Louis is doing well for a manager who had not progressed beyond the bantam ranks before his first attempt in the National League.

For their part, the Senators returned to the past by bringing Jacques Martin back to the bench.

Admiration for the Canadiens alumni

Lamoriello has always had a soft spot for former Canadiens players. Patrick Roy is the fifth former member of the Montreal organization to be hired by the venerable general manager as head coach to lead his team.

The first four, Jacques Lemaire, Larry Robinson, Pat Burns and Claude Julien, were hired by Lamoriello during his long tenure as GM of the New Jersey Devils. The first three led the Devils to the Stanley Cup: Lemaire in 1995, Robinson in 2000 and Burns in 2003.

Julien wasn't so lucky. Despite scoring 102 points, Lamoriello surprisingly showed Julien the door with only three games remaining in the 2006 regular season.

Lamoriello reached out to Lemaire in the days following the Canadian's last Stanley Cup victory in 1993.

Lemaire, Serge Savard's right-hand man, knew he was spending his final moments with the Habs during the Cup parade. He leaned back in the back of the huge wagon that transported players and team management members downtown.

Two years later, the Devils marched in with the trophy for the first time and Lemaire as leader. However, the event was less attractive than in Montreal, as it was held in the parking lot of the Meadowlands Arena in the East Rutherford wetlands.

The team included Claude Lemieux and Stéphane Richer, who had their names engraved on the trophy as members of the Canadiens in 1986. Also there was Tom Chorske, who traded with Richer to the Devils in 1991 in return for Kirk Muller and Roland Melanson.

The Devils relied on another player from Quebec, Martin Brodeur, a future member of the Hockey Hall of Fame.

Robinson took over from Robbie Ftorek in March 2000. The Devils players couldn't get enough of Ftorek, whose methods were tested everywhere he went.

Three months later, the Stanley Cup visited the Meadowlands for the second time.

In 2002, Lamoriello reached out to Burns, who was then working in the media world. In June, the Devils won their third championship in nine years with a former Canadien on the bench.

Big challenge for Patrick

Before wondering if Roy could do the same with the Islanders, he must first lead the team to the playoffs.

Before Saturday's games, the Islanders were in 11th place in the Eastern Conference. But they were only two points behind eighth place. We can expect his arrival behind the bench to give the New York team a boost of energy.

We know the man; No challenge scares him.

A lot of work awaits him. But we know the man.

The Islanders' offense is yielding less than three goals per game (2.93), while their goals allowed average is rising to over three per game (3.36).

Their most productive players are the speedy Mathew Barzal, who is the team's top scorer with 46 points; Defenseman Noah Dobson, winner of the Memorial Cup with the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies in 2018 and the Acadie-Bathurst Titan in 2019, follows with 45 points; and Bo Horvat (42 points), former Vancouver Canucks captain whose services they acquired last season.

The Islanders will be interesting to follow over the next few weeks.