I have to admit that I enjoy listening to TSN analyst Mike Milbury. He's opinionated and more importantly, he has a sense of humor.
Following Toronto's 1-0 defeat to the Buffalo Sabres on Wednesday, Milbury joked that the loss was probably a blessing in disguise.
When it comes right down to it, he's right—though many diehard Leafs fans might not want to believe it.
With every loss, the Leafs ensure a sub-par .500 season with no playoff spot and a higher draft position come June. If Toronto tanks the season, it'll have a legitimate shot at Steven Stamkos of the Sarnia Sting, a blue-chip prospect in the upcoming NHL entry draft.
But I digress.
Milbury is an interesting dude, to say the least.
The Massachusetts native played 11 seasons in the NHL as a defenseman with the Boston Bruins and became a household name after a 1979 game at Madison Square Garden when Milbury, along with several teammates, jumped into the stands during a brawl and wound up with a spectator's shoe in hand, proceeding to hit the poor guy with it.
What a team player!
The 55-year-old Milbury went on to serve as assistant general manager to Harry Sinden and head coach of the Bruins, before becoming GM and coach of the New York Islanders.
It was with the Islanders that he was given the moniker Mad Mike for his propensity to wheel and deal. And, most times, the results were less than favorable.
He peddled away a plethora of promising, young defensemen and forwards and received little in return. Milbury dealt away blue liners such as Zdeno Chara, Bryan McCabe, Darius Kasparaitis, Bryan Berard, and Wade Redden, as well as forwards Raffi Torres and Todd Bertuzzi—all before they had a chance to blossom.
Not to mention, Milbury traded the best young goalie in the NHL today, Robert Luongo, and Olli Jokinen to the Florida Panthers in 2000 for Mark Parrish and Oleg Kvasha.
I'd say Mad Mike got fleeced on that deal.
But despite all of his mistakes as a GM, Milbury has the gift of gab. Something I certainly appreciate as a television viewer and a sports fan.