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New York Islanders

Bob Hartley appears to be the favorite on Long Island

From Craig Custance of the Sporting News:

It’s kind of been on the back burner with other stories like the Gretzky trade anniversary and Mats Sundin craziness, but expect the Islanders to name a new head coach within the next week. While Garth Snow seemed to interview everyone under the sun, the people I’ve talked to around hockey believe Bob Hartley is still the favorite. He was one of Snow’s first interviews and I was told it went really well.

Hartley, who wants to get back behind the bench despite the fact that he’ll make $1.2 million this season from the Thrashers, brings a lot to the table. He’s won everywhere he’s coached, including a Stanley Cup in Colorado. He’s also the ideal personality to work with a team that is looking to extend its brand in the community. The ownership in Atlanta loved the fact that Hartley was so good with sponsors, fans, kids and all the extracurricular things that come with coaching in a city that needs to do a little extra to bring fans into the arena.

Read the entire article here.

Hartley is certainly a capable coach, but I just don’t understand why Scott Gordon wouldn’t be the favorite on the Island.  The team is clearly rebuilding and Hartley has a reputation as being a veteran coach.  Gordon has a good record coaching youngsters in Providence of the AHL and would be a nice fit with the team’s young core.  Why Hartley’s personality in the community would get him the job is beyond me.  The biggest thing that brings back fans is winning and, while I know Hartley is capable of winning (see: Stanley Cup ring), this doesn’t look like the right fit to me.