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Doug Weight uncertain of future with Islanders

New York coach, who took over midseason, hopes to remain with organization

by Brian Compton @BComptonNHL / Deputy Managing Editor

NEW YORK -- The New York Islanders did their part Saturday in their quest to clinch a berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs when they won their fifth straight game, 4-2 against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center, but came up short when the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-3 shortly after.

The Islanders offseason begins the moment their game against the Ottawa Senators ends Sunday. Whether it will be Doug Weight's final game as coach remains to be seen. Weight has guided the Islanders to a record of 23-12-4 since replacing Jack Capuano on Jan. 17.

"It's going to be healthier for us as a franchise and an organization to move forward as quick as we can and figure things out," Weight said Sunday. "That's where I'll leave that. I'm going to meet with everybody. First of all, no matter where I am, hopefully in this organization somewhere whether it's here or somewhere else helping this team win, the city, the fans get what they deserve, a consistent winner.

"We've got to get the players off and talk about what they have to do in the offseason and talk about this year and to focus on getting off to a good start next year. But I'm going to think everything over, I'm going to talk to my bosses, which I think we all know we have to do, and figure this out.

"I didn't sleep much [Saturday] night. I've been really focused and I haven't been lying to you guys. I always admit that you're always going to think of things in the future, there's too many hours in the day. But we've kind of as a group just focused on the next game, and the next game, and you try to portray that to the players."

The Islanders will miss out on the playoffs after making it in each of the past two seasons and three of the past four.

"You look back at seven or eight games in the beginning of the season, last two minutes, last three minutes where we lost some points, and it pains you," Weight said.

Weight admitted when the Islanders game ended on Saturday, he got in his car and watched the Penguins-Maple Leafs game on his phone.

Jake Guentzel gave the Penguins a 3-2 lead at 6:51 of the third period, but the Maple Leafs scored three straight goals late to clinch the final playoff berth in the Eastern Conference.

"[Jake Guentzel] missed an empty net and you're cursing him, and five seconds later or a minute later, he's bouncing it off three skates," Weight said. "You're thinking, 'All right, this is going to happen.' It was disappointing. You want [Sidney Crosby] to raise that one and get it in the roof (of the net) and see what happens in OT. But the fact is, you didn't control your own destiny. And the real fact is, Toronto, they're a young team and they answered the bell. They've had some tough situations throughout the season where people were questioning them, the whole year. Boston and Toronto got it done. Tampa and us are on the outside looking in. You make your bed."

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