New York Islanders: Analyzing Anders Lee’s career 400 games in

New York Islanders. Anders Lee (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
New York Islanders. Anders Lee (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images) /
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New York Islaners
New York islanders (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

Impressed the right people.

There is no rule in the NHL that says a team has to have a captain. The “C” patch could collect dust all season for all some teams care. Look at the cross-town rival Rangers, they do not have a captain. But, somehow, Lee managed to be named the 15th captain in Islanders history.

The second Barry Trotz and Lou Lamoriello came in, you just knew they were the kind of people very hard to impress. That is not a knock of them at all, they are just proven winners while the Islanders players were proven losers.

Well, things changed drastically. John Tavares left and while that hasn’t worked out too poorly as it turns out, at the time that left a huge void in terms of leadership. The only player who scored more points last season than JT was rookie Mathew Barzal. He was not nearly ready to become captain.

It seemed like the Isles were not going to even name a single captain. Then, just hours before the season started, it was announced that Lee was given the honors. You have to realize how impressive this is.

One, Trotz and Lou had not spent that much time with Lee prior to this point. Not even a full NHL offseason of knowing him. That means they must have known what he is capable of by watching him play against them and seeing him behind closed-door with him teammates.

But, let’s realize this. Barry Trotz’s last captain was Alexander Ovechkin. He is a generational talent and an all-time great. Lee is far from that right now, but clearly still talented enough to earn praise from his coach. Let’s not forget the lingering risk of losing him this offseason, Trotz didn’t seem to care this could have been short-term.

He has earned the confidence of Barry Trotz, a Cup winning coach. Sometimes the numbers say a lot, but earning Trot’s trust speaks louder than any of Lee’s stats do. He must be a true leader.

He had played in 400 games and has impressed Barry Trotz and was given the elusive “C’ patch. Crazy times we are living in.