People sometimes say that Milbury wasn’t so bad. How was it possible to guess that Chara was going to be good, that Yashin would be a bust, that cheap owners forced his hand. For them I have the following to point out.
The following trades/player moves were both pre-wang and didn’t involve anyone forcing Milbury’s hand.
Berard for Potvin
JP Dumont for Nabokov
The whole Mike Rupp situation
Bertuzzi and McCabe for Linden
No one held a gun to his head and said “You have to get rid of these guys or else” And in all those deals he traded away quality young players for just about nothing. But here, I give you the most confusing trade sequence in Milbury’s NHL history:
01/14/02: ANA trades RW Jim Cummins to NYI for LW Dave Roche.
03/19/02: ANA trades LW Dave Roche to NYI for LW Ben Guite and the rights to RW Bjorn Melin.
Now since none of these guys are common household names, let me run through who they are/were.
Dave Roche a former 3rd rounder in 93 who got most of his career 171 games across 2 seasons with the Penguins. Following his season with the Islanders/Ducks he played 2 more seasons in the AHL before hanging it up. He played 1 game that season with the Islanders
Jim Cummins a former 4th rounder in 1989, Cummins was playing his next to last NHL season. He was a goon whose best by date had passed
Ben Guite A 7th Rounder in 1997, Guite eventually found his way to Colorado putting up 45 points in 175 career games. He is still playing today as he was on the AHL Admirals last season.
Bjorn Melin A 6th round pick in 1999, Melin was eventually convinced to come over and try the AHL/NHL for a season before returning to the Swedish select League.
Which leads me to the point, Who was David Roche? Why did we need to give up 2 youngsters to get Roche back? Why Trade Roche if he was worth that much? I found this trade completely by accident and wanted to slam my head through my desk. It makes no sense. And that’s Milbury, never looking ahead and always over valuing vets. I mean why did he even pick Melin if the guy was never going to come to America? Why did Milbury always bash the European game but always draft so many Europeans who never wanted to play in North America? It’s just so illogical.