Clearly, it’s also some kind of coaching award too. When I predicted back in September that the Islanders defense and goals against would improve, it was based on the theory that it couldn’t get worse than the previous year.
Somehow, it was 100 goals better, and that, more than anything is why they finished the year with 103 points. Because if you look at the scoring stats and the roster, it clearly wasn’t because of the dynamic scoring punch.
We talk all the time about defense and goaltending winning in the playoffs, so we’ll see how well this team holds up. They still need to score a few goals though.
But hey, we’re watching the Isles in the playoffs. Who thought that was even possible at the start of this year?