I know it's the Post, but it's a slow day. It does have some Milbury
quotes so that helps.
> MILBURY CONDUCTING
> POST-MORTEM CHATS
> May 1, 2003 -- Nobody's been put on alert - yet.
> Islander GM Mike Milbury has been meeting with coaches and players
> over the last week in one-on-ones he described as "truthful"
> sessions, through which he hopes to piece together what went wrong
> with his team down the stretch and in the first round of the
> playoffs. >>>
Where were all these truthful sessions when it was clear the team
was struggling, who is changing their stories ? Where was Milbury at
the deadline to get rid of players who were the problem when he was
talking Stanley Cup with Wang ? It is clear there are problems in
this teams lockeroom. Six other teams lost in the first round and are
not doing this, with the Leafs being the other team on the outspoken
It sure did not take much to see what was coming. Sure the schedule
was terrible and so was the grind, but this is beyond that. It's
things we have seen since day one of the season in Buffalo.
> Milbury has said he felt the team was not playing together and
skating with nowhere near the level of passion needed. >>>
Again, if that was the case, where was the gm to rock to coaching
staff and the room. He did this with Goring to get someone to stand
up to him at the time, when no one did, Butch was on borrowed time
from that moment.
Did this tactic get old or did Laviolette tell him to stay out of
his room ? MM comes off as some kind of bystander this time and
that's a new role for him. If he did not know what was going on he
did not do a very good job himself.
> "We're trying to ask some tough questions," Milbury said yesterday,
> on his way to Bridgeport for Game 3 of the Islander farm team's AHL
> playoff series.>>
> Milbury said, it was "premature" to reveal any more than that while
> he still has "three or four" players to interview. >>>
I do not need him to reveal anything. It would be appreciated if
actions spoke louder than words for a change, he kept the teams dirty
laundry to itself and moved whoever he feels is the problem in a
I do get the feeling it's someone he cannot move/will not move or it
would have been done at the deadline.
> "All in all," Milbury said, "I think guys have been
very truthful." >>
> Coach Peter Laviolette's name reportedly was popular in the
conversations in regard to reports that questioned his coaching.>>>
> But Milbury wouldn't elaborate yesterday because he hasn't yet
> concluded his investigation.>>
> "I've spoken to the coaches to a certain extent," said Milbury,
> adding, "I seem to be hearing the same things.">>>
If he is hearing the same things he should know where to start. I
think he backs his coach or Milbury is the next coach and replaces
Laviolette because he hired him. I also think it's too easy to put it
all at Laviolette. Scatchard, Blake, Asham produced so someone did
respond to his coaching.
That said I do not see Laviolette fired unless it's a problem with
Yashin, Peca, Hamrlik or Aucoin that will not go away.
Again, actions speak louder than words and we will know soon enough
because MM likes to talk. If there is any dirty laundry that has to
be aired it should be from Wang/Kumar on the gm because this
ownership did not get it's money's worth and paid forty millon in
2002-03. They have the right to ask the hard questions because that
is a extremely generous payroll with this teams revenue stream and
I absolutely believe they lost 23 million which means break even for
this franchise means cutting payroll to 17 million and getting the
same attendance at the current ticket prices. That is not happening.
Bottom line is this ownership is going to stand by it's gm's
decisions, which means a higher payroll or fire him and get someone
to do what small market teams with limited revenue do and that's
build the team Wang and Kumar said they wanted to build from day one.
Also fair or not the fans are not going to run out and spend these
prices for tickets unless they feel they have been given a realistic
chance at a winner. Wang and Kumar may have a hard time understanding
that because what Ted Leonsis said in Washington is what's ahead if
things continue on the trend they are on.