Former Islanders coach Barry Trotz has reportedly decided not to be behind an NHL bench for the start of next season.
TSN’s Darren Dreger, citing NHL sources, reported Trotz informed the Winnipeg Jets on Friday of his decision. The Jets, Trotz’s hometown team as he grew up in nearby Dauphin, Manitoba, had made no secret of their desire to hire him as the full-time replacement for Paul Maurice after Dave Lowry finished the season as their interim coach.
The Panthers hired Maurice this week. The Flyers hired John Tortorella. The Stars hired former Vegas coach Pete DeBoer and Vegas hired former Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy. All were jobs that Trotz was linked to as a potential candidate.
Dreger reported that Trotz has not ruled out returning to coaching at some point.
Islanders president and general manager Lou Lamoriello fired Trotz on May 9, saying the team needed a “new voice” after missing the playoffs for the first time in Trotz’s four seasons with the organization.
Lane Lambert, Trotz’s associate coach the past four seasons as well as an assistant on Trotz’s staffs with the Capitals and Predators since 2011, was named his successor on May 16.
Trotz, who will turn 60 on July 15, went 152-102-34 in his four seasons with the Islanders and led them to back-back appearances in the NHL semifinals in 2020-21, losing both times to the eventual Stanley Cup champion Lightning.
He started his NHL career with the expansion Predators in 1998 and coached 15 seasons in Nashville before four in Washington. He has a career mark of 914-670-168 with 60 ties in 1,812 games. Trotz trails only Scotty Bowman (1,244) and Joel Quenneville (969) in NHL coaching victories and only Bowman (2,141) in games coached.
Trotz, whose mother passed away on Jan. 1, had spoken toward the end of the season of spending more time with family.
He could not be immediately reached for comment.