#8: Sonny Milano
8th out of 34 eligible players
Writers’ Vote: 8th
Readers’ Vote: 10th
Highest Placement: 3rd (1 vote)
Most Common Placement: 9th (10 votes)
Birthdate: May 12, 1996
Birthplace: Massapequa, NY
Weight: 194 lbs
Position: Left Wing
Acquired: Drafted by Columbus in Round 1 of the 2014 draft (#16 overall)
It’s well-chronicled by now how much adversity Sonny Milano went through last season. First, the former first round pick only appeared in eight games with the Blue Jackets, producing one goal (1—1-0) before spending the rest of the year with the Monsters.
While down on the farm, it was also an injury-riddled year for Milano, as he registered 24 points (11-13) for Cleveland in 27 games played. He was, however, the leading point-getter for the team (10—2-8) in the playoffs. Of course, off-ice problems mounted once the season commenced as he was charged with third degree assault in early July and will have a hearing Sept. 4.
Before the arrest, it already felt likely that Milano was the one candidate in need of a fresh change of scenery. But the Jackets and Milano came to an agreement on a new one-year deal, as Milano accepted the qualifying offer worth $874,125 just a week after the arrest. No longer waiver exempt, this upcoming season figures to be the best opportunity for Milano to stick the roster. Remember, he would need to clear waivers in order to return to the minors this year.
Here’s more from Elaine on Milano:
“When Milano came back from his injury he was throwing hits. That’s why more teams were getting extra aggressive with him because he was making plays, scoring goals, and laying out hits. He wasn't taking anyone’s shenanigans. I dont know if anyone, including management, is aware of how much better Milano got this season. In the playoffs he led the team with 10 points and eight assists. He was a plus-7 and it’s not an inflated number. It’s because he was doing amazing things.”