Washington Capitals fans saw a familiar face on the visiting bench Friday night. Barry Trotz, who led the team to the franchise’s first Stanley Cup championship last season, made his return to D.C. with his new team, the New York Islanders.
Despite the fact that Trotz resigned less than two weeks after winning the Cup, the Capitals honored their former coach with a tribute video during the first period. Everyone in attendance, including the players, gave Trotz a standing ovation. The longtime coach kept his emotions in check as he motioned thanks to the crowd. The video also thanked assistants Lane Lambert and Mitch Korn, who moved with Trotz to the Islanders.
To Barry, Lane and Mitch – THANK YOU! pic.twitter.com/ridVTWZwHh
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) January 19, 2019
“My heart is full of good memories,” Trotz told reporters prior to the game. “I’ve worked with great people, we’ve had good teams, won a lot of games, and we did the ultimate, we won the Stanley Cup.
“This whole fan base is so passionate, to see the excitement, it brought (back) all those memories, the parade, the winning, all the other stuff that goes along with it.
“I’ve had a smile on my face all day today.”
[email protected] just checking in with his old coach. pic.twitter.com/rYg0V1J1vR
— NHL GIFs (@NHLGIFs) January 19, 2019
Trotz manned the Capitals bench for four seasons and compiled a regular season record of 205-89-34, which was an NHL-best during that span. Along with the Cup, he collected two Presidents’ Trophies and was the 2016 Jack Adams Award winner. When he resigned because of an inability to agree on a contract extension with GM Brian McLellan, he became one of four coaches in the last 40 years to not return to their team after winning the Stanley Cup.
On Friday, Trotz’s new squad came away with a 2-0 victory. In the third period, the Islanders’ Josh Bailey and Cal Clutterbuck potted goals while Thomas Greiss picked up the shutout with 19 saves.