Barry Trotz's vision helped guide the Washington Capitals to the Stanley Cup. Now, the 56-year-old is confident that a similar vision, one that emphasizes defense and preaches accountability, can help restore the New York Islanders as a winning franchise
"There's going to be change. It's going to be structurally, on and off the ice, expectations are going to change," Trotz told The Athletic's Arthur Staple. "Nothing against any former regimes, but we have our own vision of what we want to do, how we're going to do it.
"They've done a lot of good things here. There's certain things in the way things are managed or established, the rules or how you do things. To me, culture change is an attitude - getting the right attitude, standing for something."
Most importantly, it's up to Trotz and his staff, many of whom followed him from Washington, to shore up the team's biggest weakness: its play in its own end.
"One of the easiest things to correct, if there's a commitment and a buy-in, is keeping the puck out of your net," Trotz added. "We'll need a bigger buy-in, we'll put some structure, we'll make sure the details are there and we'll make players accountable. If they're not, we'll get someone who can be accountable."
Trotz's system will be tested in trying to clean up the Islanders' leaky defensive coverage. New York allowed a league-worst 296 goals last season, more than any team in the last decade.
After rotating between goalies Jaroslav Halak and Thomas Greiss last year, the team will turn to a new starter in Robin Lehner, who inked a one-year deal in free agency. Lehner, 27, posted a 42-61-22 record with a .916 save percentage and a 2.77 GAA over the last three seasons with the Buffalo Sabres.