2014 NHL Draft - Round 1

No contract talks between Milano and Blue Jackets


Columbus Blue Jackets draft pick Sonny Milano has been one of the most talked about prospects this summer as he weighed his options before choosing to join the Plymouth Whalers of the Ontario Hockey League over of honoring his commitment to Boston College.

There was some thought that Milano had singed or was close to signing an entry-level contract with Columbus, which made him decide to choose the Canadian Hockey League route.

However, speaking to MiHockeyNow, Milano said contract talks between the two sides haven’t even started.

“Maybe a strong start or a strong season will get me that contract, but there hasn’t been any talks yet,” Milano said. “When I was drafted, Columbus said they had no preference one way or the other, that both the OHL and Boston College were good routes. They basically left it up to us to decide as a family.”

Milano, the 16th overall selection by Columbus in June, had 14 goals and 39 points in 25 games during the 2013-14 while with the U.S. National Under-18 team.

The 5-foot-11, 183-pound forward was originally a  fourth round pick of the Whalers (81st overall) during the 2012 OHL draft.

There will be a couple of familiar faces for Milano when he joins his OHL team.

Milano and Whalers’ goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic were apart of the American team which won gold at the World U-18 championship. He also played with Whalers’ defenseman Josh Wesley with the NTDP in 2012-13.

“We have a lot of returning players and just a couple new guys, so I’m hoping the chemistry is here from last season and I can be an impact player and find my role quickly,” Milano said. “I want to produce and I want to make an impact.

“I want to be a leader and whatever I do, it’s to put the team first.”

Related: Blue Jackets say they didn’t push Milano to choose OHL over Boston College

Kings GM says Mike Richards went into ‘a destructive spiral’

Mike Richards

The Los Angeles Kings may owe Mike Richards money until 2031 (seriously), but in settling his grievance, the team and player more or less get to turn the page.

Not before Kings GM Dean Lombardi shares his sometimes startling perspective, though.

Lombardi has a tendency to be candid, especially in the press release-heavy world of sports management. Even by his standards, his account of Richards’ “destructive sprial” is a staggering read from the Los Angeles Times’ Lisa Dillman.

“Without a doubt, the realization of what happened to Mike Richards is the most traumatic episode of my career,” Lombardi said in a written summation he provided to the Los Angeles Times. “At times, I think that I will never recover from it. It is difficult to trust anyone right now – and you begin to question whether you can trust your own judgment. The only thing I can think of that would be worse would be suspecting your wife of cheating on you for five years and then finding out in fact it was true.”

Lombardi provides plenty of eyebrow-raising statements to Dillman, including:

  • He believed he “found his own Derek Jeter” in Richards, a player who “at one time symbolized everything that was special about the sport.”
  • Lombardi remarked that “his production dropped 50 percent and the certain ‘it’ factor he had was vaporizing in front of me daily.”
  • The Kings GM believes that he was “played” by Richards.

… Yeah.

Again, it’s a powerful read that you should soak in yourself, even if you’re unhappy with the way the Kings handled the situation.

Maybe the most pressing of many lingering questions is: will we get to hear Richards’ side of the story?

Coyotes exploit another lousy outing from Quick

Jonathan Quick

Despite owning two Stanley Cup rings, there are a healthy number of people who aren’t wild about Jonathan Quick.

Those people might feel validated through the Los Angeles Kings’ first two games, as he followed a rough loss to the San Jose Sharks with a true stinker against the Arizona Coyotes on Friday.

Sometimes a goalie has a bad night stats-wise, yet his team is as much to blame as anything else. You can probably pin this one on Quick, who allowed four goals on just 14 shots through the first two periods.

Things died down in the final frame, but let’s face it; slowing things down is absolutely the Coyotes’ design with a 4-1 lead (which ultimately resulted in a 4-1 win).


A soft 1-0 goal turned out to be a sign of things to come:

Many expected the Kings to roar into this second game after laying an egg in their opener. Instead, the Coyotes exploited Quick’s struggles for a confidence-booster, which included key prospect Max Domi scoring a goal and an assist.

It’s worth mentioning that Mike Smith looked downright fantastic at times, only drawing more attention to Quick’s struggles.


After a troubled summer and a failed 2014-15 season, Los Angeles was likely eager to start things off the right way.

Instead, they instead will likely focus on the fact that they merely dropped two (ugly) games.