Former Capitals coach Barry Trotz, making his first visit to Capital One Arena in Washington as coach of the New York Islanders, was greeted with a standing ovation Friday night when a video tribute in his honor played during the first break in action.
Trotz saluted fans throughout the video, which ended by showing him and the Capitals hoisting the Stanley Cup in June.
Trotz turned to the Islanders bench and said, "That's us this year boys!"
"My heart got full of all the good memories,'' Trotz said. "I was looking up there. I was trying not to look too much because I was getting pretty close to that sensitive side of myself. But it was extremely well done and it was just great memories and everybody was a part of something special.''
The Caps already had played Trotz's Islanders at Barclays Center on Nov. 26; Washington won, 4-1. On Friday, the Islanders came out on top, winning 2-0 to leapfrog the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Caps and moved into first place in the Metropolitan Division.
"We just talked about climbing,'' Trotz said. "It just happened that the Caps were the next team in front of us. Two weeks ago we were talking about Buffalo and other teams like Montreal and just said, 'Let's keep climbing and don't look up and just keep going,' and the guys have been really good.''
Trotz coached the Capitals for four seasons, in which the team went 205-89-34 -- the best record in the NHL in that span. He won the Jack Adams Award as the league's best coach in 2016. But Trotz resigned as Capitals coach in mid-June, less than two weeks after winning the Cup, due to a contract dispute.
Trotz, the hottest free-agent coach on the market, quickly landed a job with the Islanders, who are also in the Metropolitan.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.