McDonald: With Another Loss And No Answers Is Regime Change In The Cards For The Islanders?

Time has to be ticking for Jack Capuano, right?

They have to fire Jack or at least do something.

On the eve of the sixth anniversary of Capuano taking over the Islanders bench, there are no answers for his maligned club, as the Islander got trashed again by the Lightning, 4-0.

In a game where the Islanders were in it for the first 18:58 of the affair, they were unable to overcome two goals in the last 62 seconds of the first period. First by JT Brown and the by Ryan Callahan in less than one minute the game was over.

Game, set and match.

“We got a little lackadaisical on the track,” Capuano said. “Brown puts it in and the second one had eyes.”

Ok, great, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to quit. There was another 41 minutes for the Islanders to play, but they were no match for the Lightning, who outscore the club 14-2 over the three games they played over the last two weeks.

But the Isles now sit at 5-8-3 and 1-3-3 in their last seven games. It’s getting late, early.

And you don’t have to tell the Islander fans, who seem to have replaced the “Rangers (stink)” chant with “Fire Cappy” and “Snow Must Go!”

So maybe regime change is in order at the confluence of Flatbush and Atlantic. With three days off, the Islanders could be looking to make a switch.

But the old adage says the players lose the games, not the coach and many times a coaching change doesn’t do much.

However, in this case, you have to wonder if Capuano’s reign has reached its expiration. Even though fans yell all the time to fire a coach, because they don’t like his in-game moves, if the players still play hard for him, there is no reason why to make a move.

Over the summer, Terry Collins almost was replaced, but his saving grace was that he still had the Mets clubhouse. No move was made and the Mets went on a run to the Wild Card.

Here, though, Capuano is doing everything to get the Islanders on track, but you have the same lackluster performance from his club. He even took the blame tonight.

“Where I have to be better is that I have not found the line combinations with this hockey club,” Capuano said. “This one is on me. The players are well prepared to go out and play every day, but I have not found the right combinations.”

He went on to say every time in the past, he eventually worked it out, but unfortunately not this year.

Ok, that’s all great and plenty of blame goes on general manager Garth Snow, who brought in square pegs to fit in round holes with Andrew Ladd, Jason Chimera, and the now waived P.A. Parenteau to replace Kyle Okposo, Franz Neilson, and Matt Martin.

But really you have to look at the effort out there. Capuano may be saying the right things and switching things up like he did in the past, but it’s falling on deaf ears.

And if that is the case, then he must be replaced.

The only question is when. New owner Jon Ledecky may have to step in and make this call. Snow has shown great loyalty to Capuano in the past and may be averse to moving a coach he has great affinity for.

Ultimately, he will have to see if it’s time to replace Snow, Capuano or both. And when to do it.

It could be tomorrow and it could be at the end of the season.

But something has to be done.

No one wants to see a nice guy like Capuano lose his job, but right now it may be the only thing left for the Islanders to save their season.

About the Author

Joe McDonald

Joe McDonald is the founder and former publisher of NY Sports Day. After selling to i15Media in 2020, he serves as the Editor-in-Chief and responsible for the editorial side of the publication. In the past, Joe was the managing editor of NY Sportscene magazine and assistant editor of Mets Inside Pitch. He has covered the Mets since 2004.

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