New York Islanders’ Barry Trotz passes legendary coach Al Arbour on all-time games coached list

As he stood on the bench at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on Sunday, New York Islanders’ head coach Barry Trotz was coaching in his 1,608th career game. The ironic thing is, the man he passed manned that very bench for 1,500 games. 

Trotz, who spent 15 years with the Nashville Predators and four with the Washington Capitals, now sits third overall on the NHL’s all-time games coached list — supplanting legendary bench boss Al Arbour.

Arbour, a Hall of Famer who won four Stanley Cups on Long Island, famously returned for one game in November 2007 at the request of then-head coach Ted Nolan to round out his games coached at 1,500. He and Nolan co-coached the team to a 3-2 win more than 13 years since he last stood on an NHL bench.

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With a banner marking Arbour’s 1,500 games coached hanging from the rafters in the Old Barn, Trotz was behind the bench for his 84th game with New York. 

The long-time coach won the Stanley Cup with the Capitals in 2018 before signing a five-year deal with New York. Last season he won the Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s top coach after leading the Islanders to an impressive 48-28-7 record. It marked his second time winning the award, winning in 2016 with Washington.

Now in his 21st year steering the ship, the 57-year-old has a 810-596-60 record with a .567 win percentage. He currently sits fourth on the all-time wins list, 39 behind Ken Hitchcock, and has Florida Panthers head coach Joel Quenneville in front of him for games coached. They both are chasing legendary Hall of Famer Scotty Bowman at 2,141.

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