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New coach Lane Lambert aims to regain Islanders old identity

Lane Lamberts appointment because the Islanders head coach was more about regaining the teams identity than forging a fresh one.

His method of doing that begun to make itself clear on Thursday, when Lambert officially led practice for the very first time during training camp.

The brand new voice is merely my voice, said Lambert who was simply the very best assistant last season to Barry Trotz, who was simply fired in-may following the Islanders missed the playoffs. Its different in the manner I communicate and just how I talk. Theres nothing wrong with the old voice with regards to what he did, but its certainly different for me personally now. Im a demanding, passionate guy, really. And the players understand that plus they respect that and I respect them.

The Islanders arent likely to drastically alter the direction they play under Lambert, however, not everything would be the same.

I believe just from the couple meetings and the initial day, they want us to be aggressive in every three regions of the zone, defenseman Noah Dobson told The Post. Specifically for D-men, a large emphasis is our gaps and waking up the ice and being aggressive.

Islanders coach Lane Lambert (front) along with assistants John McClean (left) and Johnny Boychuk
Islanders coach Lane Lambert (front) alongside assistants John McClean (left) and Johnny Boychuk
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That emphasis is really a departure from the way the Islanders played last season, if they prioritized defensive structure over adding to the rush.

Aggressive, it proved, was a buzzword in the dressing room.

Hes discussed just being more aggressive, attempting to be just threatening all the time, center Mathew Barzal said. Looking to get the D a bit more active, just skating more.

For Lamberts communication style, players find him direct and ready to hold them accountable. That, they believe, should help them regain the rhythm that slipped from them amid a disastrous 2021-22.

I believe towards the finish [of the season], we were consistently getting back again to it. We were consistently getting back to being truly a hard team to play against, center Jean-Gabriel Pageau told The Post. And I believe thats what you want to get back to.

Defenseman Bode Wilde, who was simply exiled to Sweden this past year after refusing to obtain vaccinated for COVID-19, won’t attend training camp, per the team. The Islanders are determining an assignment for Wilde this year.

The Islanders will eventually lose their 2023 third-round pick to the Coyotes, that they conditionally traded in the Andrew Ladd deal. Ladd reportedly failed his physical and can continue IR.

LW Otto Koivula, D Isaiah George and LW Collin Adams didnt skate on Thursday with undisclosed injuries. Lambert said they might be evaluated on Friday.

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