This past week has been a special one for Dauphin’s Barry Trotz. Not only did his New York Islanders shut out the club’s archival New York Rangers, but in doing so, the veteran bench boss picked up his 850th career NHL regular season victory.
A milestone victory in of itself, the win also actually moved Trotz one victory ahead of Ken Hitchcock for third place all-time on the NHL’s wins leaderboard.
“I do feel a little bit out of place because I have the admiration for not only ‘Hitch’ and some of the people that I have passed, but also some people ahead,” Trotz said. “I look up at those people because I admire what they’ve done for their teams and I really don’t look at myself a whole lot, so that’s why it seems a little bit awkward sometimes.”
In typical Barry Trotz form, his Islanders shut out the Rangers in a defensive-focused battle. Winning 2-0 in a game that saw both teams register 30 shots, with the Islanders killing off three penalties, Trotz actually used a defensive strategy first implemented years ago by the man now ranked fourth on the all-time wins list.
“He’s a guy who I admire, a friend, and he’s mentored me a little bit,” Trotz said of his pal Ken Hitchcock. “He’s a great teacher. To be mentioned in the same breath as him, it’s humbling.”
Now, Trotz sits only behind the active Joel Quenneville (932) and the long-retired Scotty Bowman (1,244) on the all-time leaderboard. In 22 seasons with the Islanders, Washington Capitals and Nashville Predators, Trotz has coached 1,685 career NHL games, going 850-622-153-60 in the process.