New York Islanders: Bob Hartley Would Make Sense
Brad Rempel, USATSI

Jack Capuano should be fired, and Bob Hartley should replace him.

It’s the one thousand pound gorilla in the room.

With the New York Islanders dropping to 5-8-3 following a paltry showing against Tampa Bay, there’s no better time to fire head coach Jack Capuano than the present.

The Isles haven’t lived up to the expectations of the fanbase, and it’s alarming: the team finally took a step forward by advancing to the second round of the playoffs last season. The last thing they need is to take two steps back.

Bloggers, journalists and superfans have clamored for Capuano’s departure — long before the 2016-17 season began. They’ve complained about his line combinations and lack of emotion at postgame pressers. They’ve worried about the lack of development amongst the team’s younger players. Most importantly, they’ve protested his postseason track record (hint: it isn’t very good).

But even with all these reasons, there’s still an argument (albeit a small one) to retain Capuano. However, with the team’s poor start, it’s getting increasingly hard to defend him.

From a logical standpoint, it makes sense to get rid of the guy behind the Isles bench. The team needs a change in leadership (they’re at the point where they’re struggling to hockey). Capuano’s the leader. The law of rationality suggests that firing Cappy is the only thing that makes sense.

It’s the only thing that makes sense.

In order to fix a lethargic, uninspired team, the Isles could call on Bob Hartley, the former Stanley Cup winning coach of the Colorado Avalanche. It would be a seismic shift, transitioning from a former minor league decision-maker to a former Jack Adams Award winner.

Hartley was canned by Calgary last season, due in large part to the team’s 22nd-ranked power play and 30th-ranked penalty kill. However, he surprisingly took the 2014-15 Flames to the postseason, and was named the Jack Adams winner as a result.

Alex Prewitt of Sports Illustrated reported that Hartley has interest in returning to the National Hockey League. The Isles would be foolish not to — at a minimum — inquire about his services.

It’s the only thing that would make sense.

Justin Weiss is a staff editor at Elite Sports New York, where he covers the New York Islanders and Brooklyn Cyclones. In 2016, he received a Quill Award for Freelance Journalism. He has written for the Long Island Herald, FanSided and YardBarker.