Former NHL head coach Barry Melrose has released an autobiography entitled Dropping the Gloves. Just from looking at some of the reviews online, it seems like a pretty interesting read. Of course Melrose was public enemy number in Toronto during the Leafs 1993 playoff run, and in case any of you have blocked out that painful memory, here is a little refresher.
Melrose was behind the bench for the Los Angeles Kings during that infamous Western Conference Final showdown. Yes somehow the Leafs were in the West back them. It will be interesting to get his take on that classic confrontation when Pat Burns took a run at him in between the benches, or the obvious high-stick that drew blood, but yet somehow wasn’t a high-stick on Wayne Gretzky.
I recently read Kerry Fraser’s book, The Final Call, to see his perspective of the blown high-sticking call. There was some good insight on the process that went down for that blunder. Essentially Fraser summed it up by saying it was one of those plays that happened in a split second where none of the officials saw it, and after conferring with each other, they couldn’t make a penalty call. Not that explaining it rationally is going to make Leafs fans feel any better though.
The interesting thing about Melrose is that he grew up a die hard Leafs fan and wound up playing for Toronto in the early 80′s. He still says his first game at Maple Leaf Gardens was the most exciting time in his life.
Melrose has been wroking as an analyst for ESPN since 1996, with the exception of a brief break when he returned to coach the Tampa Bay Lightning for a few months in 2008.
Could be a good stocking stuffer, or something to read while passing the time on the commute to work. Unless you are driving of course.