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Legendary Islanders coach Al Arbour dead at 82
Fri, 28 Aug 2015 20:00:27 +0000
Uniondale, NY, United States (4E Sports) - Al Arbour , who coached the New York Islanders to four straight Stanley Cup championships in the early 1980s , passed away Friday. He was 82.
The Islanders have confirmed the death of Arbour , who was being treated for Parkinson's disease and dementia near his home in Sarasota, Florida.
"Al will always be remembered as one of, if not, the greatest coaches ever to stand behind a bench in the history of the National Hockey League," Islanders president and general manager Garth Snow said in a statement.
"The New York Islanders franchise has four Stanley Cups to its name thanks in large part to Al's incredible efforts," Snow stressed, adding that "Al is one of the reasons the Islanders are a historic franchise".
Arbour , who was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1996, also won the Stanley Cup four times as a player, with the Detroit Red Wings in 1954, with the Chicago Blackhawks in 1961 and with the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1962 and 1964.
With Arbour at the helm and with Billy Smith, Denis Potvin , Bryan Trottier , Mike Bossy and Clark Gillies in the lineup, the Islanders won the Stanley Cup in 1980, 1981, 1982 and 1983.
The Islanders made the Final in 1984 but lost to the Edmonton Oilers in five games, ending a streak of 19 consecutive playoff series victories, a record in professional sports.
Arbour had coached 1,499 games with the Islanders. He made it 1,500 when he returned for one game, Nov. 3, 2007, two days after his 75th birthday, at the behest of coach Ted Nolan and general manager Garth Snow.
The 3-2 win against the Penguins was Arbour's 740th with the Islanders, the most by any NHL coach with one team, and his 782nd overall, more than anyone except Bowman, his friend and mentor (1,244).