Gerry McNamara helped make some great draft decisions (i.e. Wendel Clark) throughout his 7+ years as general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs, but he also helped make some catastrophically poor decisions on draft day (i.e. Gary Nylund). Luckily for Gary Nylund, drafted 3rd overall in the 1982 NHL Entry Draft, he can’t be called the top selected bust of his class. That honour belongs to Gord Kluzak.
According to Kluzak’s Wikipedia entry, the former 1st overall choice of the Bruins owns “the dubious distinction of playing in the fewest games (299) of any first overall pick in NHL Entry draft history (of players taken first overall before the 2006 NHL Entry Draft)”. Similar to what Harry Sinden was thinking in taking a 6’4″ defenceman in Kluzak, McNamara and the Leafs elected to go with a hulking defenceman with little in the way of an offensive pedigree. Gary Nylund, selected ahead of Scott Stevens and Phil Housley, played parts of four seasons in Toronto before landing in Chicago as an RFA in 1986-87.
Thankfully, the Toronto Maple Leafs allowed Gary Nylund to leave that summer. Without his departure we never would have laid eyes on this Blackhawks/Maple Leafs mashup.
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