Mike Milbury made a huge mark on the Islanders' franchise. Obviously not the mark everyone else would want, but its thanks to him the picture of the Islander's beloved crest (and even that god awful fisherman) would be easily found in any dictionary next to the words "doormats," "embarrassments," "poor management," etc. It's also the reason we get comments like this from major publications: "The Isles have put together a nice run of performances, going 6-2-2 in their past 10, which is typical of a franchise that has a knack for winning games when they don't matter." (Scott Burnside of ESPN as the latest of ESPN insults to our beloved franchise). Case in point: This guy has hurt the Islanders real bad.
However, there has been one name that seems to be putting those days of shame behind us and his name is John Tavares (better known as the 26th best player under 25). Tavares was the NHL's player of the Month for January, leads the Isles in scoring for third season, and is finally starting tonget some recognition around the league (except on ESPN of course). He has been a major turning point for the last few years, but I have wonder: Would Mike Milbury have drafted John Tavares?
As we all know in 2009, there was no "consensus" pick. JT was the favorite to go No. 1, but there were so many questions about his skating, defensive play, and strength. Many thought the Islanders should have gone with Hedman as the franchise D-man or Matt Dooshene as the better center and franchise cornerstone.
Milbury's draft failures are well-documented, but the last time he had that No. 1 pick, there were also a few players vying for that No. 1 spot and Milbury obviously picked the one no one ever saw coming.
I think that we are all grateful that this decision was not Milbury's to make, but if it was, which direction would he have taken?
And if he didn't take JT, what would have been his reasoning?
I look forward to enjoying your answers.