NY Islanders legend Bobby Nystrom says Lane Lambert wasn't harsh enough with team

St Louis Blues v New York Islanders
St Louis Blues v New York Islanders / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages

New York Islanders legend Bob Nystrom knows as well as anyone what it takes for a head coach to get the most out of his players. After all, "Mr. Islander" played almost the entirety of his NHL career under Al Arbour, one of the greatest motivators that ever stood behind a bench. Arbour was fair but didn't shy away from being stern and tough on his players when the moment called for it.

It's for that reason it should come as no surprise that Nystrom was a fan of GM Lou Lamoriello's coaching change that replaced the mild-mannered Lane Lambert with the explosive Patrick Roy. The move in January paid off, as the Islanders adapted to Roy's new system and structure just in time to finish with an 8-0-1 record to place 3rd in the Metropolitan Division.

Their first-round exit in five games to the Carolina Hurricanes was disappointing, but there is optimism that a full summer and training camp will get the team more acquainted with what Roy wants to see and should lead to more sustained success and consistent efforts next season.

Speaking to the Double Chili Podcast with Peter Schwartz, Nystrom shared why he thought the switch from Lambert to Roy was necessary. "I think the change in coaching was important. He [Lambert] wasn't strong enough; Lambert just wasn't harsh enough," he said. "I think the coach we have now, he's pretty fiery and gets a little aggravated and can instill that harsh attitude of we're gonna win this thing."

During the interview, Nystrom also expressed disappointment with previous ownership that somewhat shunned alumni. That bothered Nystrom, but it's been the complete opposite since Scott Malkin and Jon Ledecky took charge.

"They treat the alumni like gold," noted Nystrom as he talked about the annual Alumni Weekends and the admiration that is shown to all players who donned the Islanders sweater.