Arbour can stay around the Islanders for as long as he likes. Torrey has signed him to a lifetime services contract, and now, after nine years with New York, he has served longer than any active coach in the league. He has quietly—Arbour can be painfully shy—put together a 423-242-160 record from behind the bench, which makes him the fifth-winningest coach in NHL history. "He's a player's coach," says Torrey. "He reveled in playing and enjoys being around players, and they feel that. They also know his basic honesty. Whether they agree with him or not, they know deep down that he's doing what's good for them and for the team."
Earlier in the playoffs, Brent Sutter gave up the puck in his own zone, and the Rangers converted his error into a goal. Arbour played Brent sparingly for a few games. When he returned against the Canucks, he played like a man possessed. Said Potvin, "Everybody sits—Bossy, Trottier, myself. We've all needed a little discipline at some time. Al has taken the talents and egos of all the individuals on this team and made sure that neither gets in the way of the team. Our character is based on his character: a cool, logical assessment of the game and a willingness to go out and work hard to correct things. He's the best of all our leaders, and we've got a number of them."
They've also got a number of Stanley Cups now, with more no doubt to come. As Trottier said on Sunday, "I only hope people don't take us for granted and get tired of seeing us win it."