NEW YORK – Three straight losses on a California trip left the New York Islanders on an 0-9-1 skid, sealing Coach Scott Gordon’s fate and earning a promotion for former Maine Black Bear Jack Capuano. Gordon was fired Monday and replaced by Capuano, the coach of the Islanders’ AHL affiliate, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

Capuano, who spends his summers in Bangor, will make his NHL coaching debut Wednesday at home against Tampa Bay.

“It’s not the ideal situation,” Capuano said after running practice. “I have great respect for Scott. We’ve been friends for a long time and I’ve learned a great deal from him. But there was a change, and I’ll make the best of my opportunity.”

Islanders General Manager Garth Snow also played for Maine.

After a 4-2-1 start, the Islanders plummeted to the bottom of the NHL standings. New York (4-10-3) is tied with Edmonton for the fewest points (11).

“When we’re in a situation we’re in right now … sometimes you have to go with your gut and make decisions that are tough,” said Snow.

Snow wouldn’t say how long Capuano would remain coach, not even committing to keeping him for the rest of the season. There were no other changes made to the coaching staff.

“We’re just concerned about Wednesday,” Snow said. “He’s the coach of this team as we speak right now. He’s excited about the opportunity and looking forward to getting this team turned around.”