The Athletic polled over 2,000 New York Islanders fans and an overwhelming majority feel like the team can contend for a Cup within the next five years.
Islanders fans and optimism usually run together like oil and water. According to a survey done by The Athletic that is no longer the case. In this survey, Islanders fans were asked numerous questions but the one that stood out the most was on the team contending for a Stanley Cup in the next five years.
An overwhelming majority, 85.4 percent voted yes. See, it all changed in 2018. The Islanders owners decided to hire Lou Lamoriello as President of Hockey Operations. From there, he made himself the General Manager and removed Doug Weight from his post as Head Coach.
Coming off a Stanley Cup victory with the Capitals, Barry Trotz became available for the taking when the Caps didn’t want to pony up the money to keep him. Lamoriello pounced on the opportunity and the team was off and running from there.
If John Tavares didn’t just suddenly remember he liked the Toronto Maple Leafs and decided to extend with the Islanders like he talked about during his entire contract year, then there’s no doubt this number is upwards of 90 percent.
Right now, the team is missing some offensive talent, there’s no denying that but how could you not love the direction this team is going.
It starts from the top, ownership is willing to pay whatever it takes and finally figured out the multiple decade long problem of a long-term solution for the Islanders home. From there, you have a General Manager that has gotten his team to five Cups and won three of them as an executive in the NHL.
Behind the bench, you have a two-time Jack Adams award winner and someone who had prolonged success in both Nashville and Washington. You’re set long-term with Barzal, Nelson, Pageau, and Cizikas down the middle you just have to find another scorer.
Maybe it’s Wahlstrom or Bellows turning into a star, or perhaps there’s amnesty buyouts and old pal Zach Parise falls in Lou’s lap, whatever the case may be for once Islanders fans are confident in who is running the team from top to bottom.
I too would fall in with the 85 percent. I think there’s a very good chance the Islanders are Cup contenders within the next five years, they’re not that far off now. One or two players can be the difference between a good team and a great team.
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Right now the Islanders are good, and the fans have confidence that they can be great very soon. It’s a beautiful thing.