Lamoriello, 78, and Trotz, 58, are the NHL's new dynamic duo
Lou Lamoriello and Barry Trotz deserve each other like Rodger deserved Hammerstein and Proctor deserved Gamble.
Lamoriello has been an NHL general manager for 34 years and Trotz has been a coach for 24 years. Both are recognized for their individual talent. But working together makes them an even greater force. Lamoriello understands how to create a roster with potential and Trotz knows how to mold that roster into a playoff beast.
When you review the moves Lamoriello has made since taking over as the Islanders' GM, the best one was hiring Trotz. Lamoriello clearly recognized that he and Trotz would be a dynamic duo.
They have shared appreciation that hockey goes well beyond talent.
"He is a learned guy and I love listening and talking to Lou," Trotz said during one of the playoff Zoom sessions. "Wa talk daily."
If you could listen to these two guys conversing about what's going right and wrong with the Islanders on a daily basis, it would like attending a PhD seminar on hockey.
"(Lamoriello) understands the value of how players are in tough games, in the locker room and as a teammate," Trotz said.
He respects the thoroughness of Lamoriello's player assessments. "It's not lacy, fancy stuff," Trotz said. "It's real."
Lamoriello is one of the best at recognizing how the parts fit together and Trotz knows how to get the most out of his talent. Lamoriello has been known to compare his team to a symphonic orchestra. If Everyone hit their notes, then the group's performance will be perfect.
Trotz is 58 and yet seems to relate well with modern players. He can be demanding and entertaining at the same time.
As Lamoriello and Trotz head for their second consecutive trip to the conference final/semifinals, it's fair to wonder what their former teams were thinking when they concluded they could live without these two.
Toronto Maple Leafs executive Brendan Shanahan announced in 2018 that Lamoriello wouldn't be back as general manager but would stay as an adviser. That paved the way for Kyle Dubas to be general manager. Under Lamoriello, the rebuilding Maple Leafs had started to qualify for the playoffs. He wasn't ready to stop being a general manager and jumped at taking charge of the Islanders.
Meanwhile, Trotz coached the Capitals to the Stanley Cup championship that same spring. The Capitals offered him less money to re-up than he thought he deserved. He walked.
Now three years later, Lamoriello and Trotz have won five playoff series. The Capitals and Maple Leafs have won none.
It's hard not to believe the Caps and Maple Leafs wold have been better served if they had kept Trotz and Lamoriello.
Not having a say anymore