New York Islanders team president Lou Lamoriello had some blunt words for John Tavares and other players who have recently left the team. Speaking with the New York Post, Lamoriello made it clear that the team is moving forward and isn’t going to focus on the past.
Especially when he believes the players who have left never accomplished anything with the team.
“There’s no aftermath. Players come and go.
It’s different if they had won championships. It’s different if they had had a lot of success. They haven’t done much — and I don’t say that with any disrespect. Haven’t been to the playoffs the last couple years. Things haven’t worked out the way everybody would have liked them to, from what my understanding is.”
Lamoriello is sort of using the Ricky Bobby mentality here by saying he means no disrespect. His harsh comments do have some truth within them – the Islanders didn’t win the Stanley Cup – but was it really necessary to say the departed players didn’t do much?
Given the immense quality of a player like Tavares, Lamoriello’s comments sound like those from a hurt individual. However, he did go on to make some team-first comments that show the organization is over putting the focus on its stars first.
“Teams win, not players. Individual players win some games, but teams win championships. And that’s what we have to create.”
Islanders head coach Barry Trotz appears to be on the same page as Lamoriello, but he wasn’t as critical with his comments.
“I don’t think with us we mentioned John once, other than when we get asked. We move on. We’re not looking back, we’re looking forward.”
That’s a much better way of saying what Lamoriello was probably thinking.
There’s no doubt that the organization is struggling to fill the impossibly-large hole left by a departing Tavares. Moving forward, and moving forward with class, means truly focusing on what’s to come and avoiding bashing the past.