I still feel the same as I did before.. I don't think they're winning to spite Cappy nor do I think he's performing some black magic getting them to play well.
I think it just comes down to the bounces are going our way and the players are making their plays. I know coaching influences a lot of what goes on I just think when it hits the fan everyone looks to the coach to get fired rather than just blaming the players. With a different coach we would probably be in an even better spot but who knows.
I believe that Capuano is rolling the lines a bit better, but I don't think he has any clue was a defensive zone coverage is supposed to look like or a breakout. Many of the players have really increased their intensity over these most recent games and I expect that somebody ripped into them a bit, and that doesn't sound like a Capuano sort of thing to do.
This is a big key. I think this team started playing much better after the Bailey-Nielsen-Okposo line was not only formed but given the task of matching up with the opponent's best line each game.
Until then, I thought Capuano was just playing whatever line was next in the rotation. Once he started actually matching up, and having a line that can play defense and win battles against top players, the Isles became harder to play against.
This isn't to say that Capuano is a great coach...matching up a strong defensive line against the other team's best players is something that he should have been doing all along. But, the fact that the team is playing better is in some part due to Capuano coaching better.
I wonder what Cappy meant last night by that comment about celebrating a win. He said something like "we have a few odd birds in that locker room, so it may be good for them"
Probably the same that Howie noticed on the bench for the empty netter in the Flyers game. The team is happy, but not overzealous. I think they realize that every game is a battle and there are no easy wins and it's a good attitude to have. He's probably alluding to the guys that still don't want to take it easy and celebrate because there is still a lot of work left to be done and they are tired of losing. Actually, Cappy probably feels the same but it's easier to relish a win as a coach than it is a player i believe. I don't mind if some of those "odd birds" won't be satisfied until they have a spot in the playoffs.
So, what to do with Cappy. Could this team really be flourishing even more with a seasoned coach? Imagine the potential....
I think we can all safely assume that Capuano will be the Islanders coach next season. The team is withing spitting distance of the playoffs and play has improved considerably of late. Things seems to be clicking with the different lines and maybe he has finally learned from his past mistakes.