UNIONDALE, N.Y. (AP) _ Rick Bowness was fired as coach of the New York Islanders today and replaced by general manager Mike Milbury, whom Bowness succeeded behind the bench a year ago.

The Islanders, who have not made the playoffs since 1994, are 22-32-9 this season and are in fifth place in the Atlantic Division. The dismissal comes after the Islanders played Buffalo and star goaltender Dominek Hasek to a 2-2 tie Tuesday night.

The decision moved the Islanders within seven points of idle Ottawa for the eighth and final postseason spot in the Eastern Conference with 19 games left.