Who says nothing happens in hockey during the month of August? That certainly wasn't the case for the New York Islanders on Aug. 17, 1992, when the franchise made a series of announcements that shook up the front office and ownership for the first time in decades.
A management group consisting of Stephen Walsh, Robert Rosenthal, Ralph Palleschi, and Paul Greenwood, known as the "Gang of Four," who had run day-to-day operations of the organization since 1989, took control over majority control of the franchise from longtime owner John Pickett. After the team failed to make the playoffs, their first move was a controversial one.
Bill Torrey, the team's first employee, and the only GM the team franchise ever knew, was replaced by former New York Rangers and Islanders winger Don Maloney, who played on Long Island during the 1989-90 and 1990-91 seasons. Maloney had spent the 1991-92 season as an assistant to the bow-tie-wearing future Hall-of-Fame hockey executive. Al Arbour remained as head coach, while Torrey was quickly named President of the expansion Florida Panthers.
"Call it the luck of the Irish. This is a fantastic opportunity for me, the club and the fans. I'm optimistic about our team. We are the only team in history to have three 40-goal scorers and not make the playoffs."- Don Maloney in UPI
Those three 40-goal scorers were Pierre Turgeon (who scored two with Buffalo), Derek King, and Ray Ferraro. The Islanders' all-time leading scorer also made news this day as Bryan Trottier announced his retirement and returned to the club as executive assistant to the president.
"This opportunity to enter the business side of hockey with friends I respect and admire is a dream come true. I'm back," said Trottier at the time, who had 500 goals in his Islanders career. The appointment was short-lived, as Trottier returned to the NHL during the 1993-94 season, scoring four goals in 41 games for the Pittsburgh Penguins.