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Is Ryan Miller elite (and on the list)?

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Old
02-09-2011, 12:31 PM
  #1
murp0837
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Is Ryan Miller elite (and on the list)?

I know we've discussed this ad nauseum, and there is probably little doubt that he's on "the list". However, after watching Miller this season I have to wonder. Is Ryan Miller elite?

His statistics are very underwhelming this year (ranking 25+ in GAA and SV%). If you were the GM or new owner, and the right deal came along, would you consider trading him? Or, are his average numbers more directly attributed to poor defensive play?

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02-09-2011, 12:39 PM
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I would consider trading him for a #1 center or a #1 d-man (to play on the same pairing as Myers or not, it doesn't matter) because center and defensive depth seem to equal winning in the new NHL. From there, I would run with Enroth as our starter.

But before that happens, we'll have to wait for a bounce-back season from Miller. Right now we would be selling low, and that's not the best way to go about things.

There are also other reasons not to trade Miller. Right now he is basically the face of the franchise.

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02-09-2011, 01:51 PM
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I'd say he's an elite goaltender. But I've seen teams win Cups without elite goaltending before...meaning, he's not untouchable.

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02-09-2011, 01:59 PM
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thefifagod
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We can debate on whether he is elite or not, I tend to lean towards yes. But there is no doubt to me that he is on the list. Pegula is not going to come in and ship out the face of the franchise, causing the majority of our fanbase to go ballistic. I'm one of the people open to moving him, but there's no chance Pegula is, since so many people would hate him for it.

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02-09-2011, 02:15 PM
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murp0837
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I'm going to twitter JPegs (twitter.com/jpegula) and ask. ;-)

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02-09-2011, 02:57 PM
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Ron Barr
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No, I don't think he is. He is a very good goalie who had an outstanding year. That year just happened to be an olympic year, which gave him even more exposure. Now he's back to just being a good goalie. He has problems with consistency, and he lets in too many soft goals on a regular basis. Not having a competent backup since 06/07 is probably a factor in his inability to secure himself in a top 5 goalie spot, but either way, I don't consider him elite.

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02-09-2011, 03:25 PM
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He's top 10, but not "elite" in my view. I don't think he's on the list.

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02-09-2011, 03:43 PM
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Mergus merganser
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Goalies are at the mercy of the team in front of them. He will never be an all time great like Hasek, Marty, or Roy, but he is most definitely a top 3-5 goalie in the league.

The team in front of him doesn't play defense, that is usually bad for goalie stats regardless of their skill level.

Just using last night as an example, how many odd man rushes/break aways did TB have? How many did their top scorers have? Miller made a bunch of huge saves, but even the best goalies will get burned by a few when you keep handing elite players great scoring chances.

It's funny, at the beginning of the season he was discussed as being the best goalie in the league hands down (by may fan bases, not just sabres fans), now he isn't even elite? Sorry, 50 games doesn't change his status in the league. I'd be willing to bet that at least 20 of those 25 teams with goalies that have better stats would trade said goalie straight up for Miller any day of the week.

Hell, I think Boston would even think pretty hard about it given the difference in age between Timmy and Miller (6 years).

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02-09-2011, 05:30 PM
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Probably nothing to this, but according to this thread there's a "rumor" of a Miller for Patrick Kane trade.

http://hfboards.com/showthread.php?t=874936

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02-09-2011, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Kassian View Post
Probably nothing to this, but according to this thread there's a "rumor" of a Miller for Patrick Kane trade.

http://hfboards.com/showthread.php?t=874936
No. It's bunk. Don't believe link-less threads.

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02-09-2011, 05:33 PM
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Miller has had an okay season. What's elite? He signed and we have no alternative. So he's the man. I'd like to see him play 55 games and back up 25.

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02-09-2011, 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Chainshot View Post
No. It's bunk. Don't believe link-less threads.
I don't think he made up the part about them mentioning it on that radio station, but it's not being reported anywhere else so you're probably right. It might have been speculation or something, like that Malkin to Buffalo thing.

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02-09-2011, 06:59 PM
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Timbo Slice
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I think Miller is a top 5 goalie in the league who's having a very bad year (A career worst, most likely). I think he's probably on the list of untradable players right now.

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02-09-2011, 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Timbo Slice View Post
I think Miller is a top 5 goalie in the league who's having a very bad year (A career worst, most likely). I think he's probably on the list of untradable players right now.
closer to his average than you might like to believe.

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02-09-2011, 08:34 PM
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BuiltTagonTough
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Elite? I think he can be, and he has been at times this year, but he's just been maddeningly inconsistent. (Playing 30 or so games in a row probably doesn't help)

Doesn't mean he's untradeable though. Though most of the town would riot if he was.

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02-09-2011, 09:32 PM
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goooal
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Miller is without a doubt a top 10 goalie in the NHL currently and likely top 5. His numbers over the past few seasons along with an understanding of the team he plays on back this up. I'm not gonna do a list of my top 10 goalies (at least not right now) because frankly, I find ranking goalies to be a real *****, but if you look at Miller he does well in most statistical categories over the past few seasons and watching him play generally confirms that he's the real deal.

Was last year an outlier? Yeah, probably (he can't win the Vezina every year!), but he's also a capable goaltender who's done well both recently and over the whole of his career.

As for trading him, I just don't see i happening. It would just take too much of an overpayment.

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02-09-2011, 09:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goooal View Post
Miller is without a doubt a top 10 goalie in the NHL currently and likely top 5. His numbers over the past few seasons along with an understanding of the team he plays on back this up. I'm not gonna do a list of my top 10 goalies (at least not right now) because frankly, I find ranking goalies to be a real *****, but if you look at Miller he does well in most statistical categories over the past few seasons and watching him play generally confirms that he's the real deal.

Was last year an outlier? Yeah, probably (he can't win the Vezina every year!), but he's also a capable goaltender who's done well both recently and over the whole of his career.

As for trading him, I just don't see i happening. It would just take too much of an overpayment.
Agreed. Miller is definitely in the highest tier of goalies, with guys like Luongo, Thomas & Lundqvist. Honestly, the "best" goalie changes on a year-to-year basis.

I mean, who else could you make an argument as being better? Kipper? Fluery? Ward? Rinne?

To me, those guys are great, but clearly second tier. Miller is elite for sure.

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02-09-2011, 09:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Ryan Ellis Problems View Post
He's top 10, but not "elite" in my view. I don't think he's on the list.
This sounds about right.

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02-09-2011, 09:46 PM
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I'd say yes to both questions. There's no chance Miller is going anywhere, for reasons that others have already brought out.

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02-09-2011, 09:49 PM
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Originally Posted by BuiltTagonTough View Post
Elite? I think he can be, and he has been at times this year, but he's just been maddeningly inconsistent. (Playing 30 or so games in a row probably doesn't help)

Doesn't mean he's untradeable though. Though most of the town would riot if he was.
I don't agree with the bolded at all.
I know many people that could care less if he is between the pipes or not.
And I know many people that would hate it if he was traded.
But it wouldn't be the "end of hockey in Buffalo" as many make it out to be.

He's an above average goalie in the NHL. He can be considered top 10 for sure at his position.

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02-09-2011, 10:38 PM
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Bobby Bottle Service
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Miller has played at the same consistent level over the last 3-4 years. And that level is outstanding. Miller gives this team a chance to win every single night. He's got no backup, has started 29 games straight, and people question if he's in the top 10?

The difference in his stats comes from the play of the team in front of him. When the team can't clear the zone, gives up multiple chances from high percentage areas, and generally plays like crap... no goalie is going to succeed under those conditions.

This is a team game and there isn't another goalie in the league I would trade Miller for straight up.

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02-09-2011, 10:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SabresFanSince89 View Post
Miller has played at the same consistent level over the last 3-4 years. And that level is outstanding. Miller gives this team a chance to win every single night. He's got no backup, has started 29 games straight, and people question if he's in the top 10?

The difference in his stats comes from the play of the team in front of him. When the team can't clear the zone, gives up multiple chances from high percentage areas, and generally plays like crap... no goalie is going to succeed under those conditions.

This is a team game and there isn't another goalie in the league I would trade Miller for straight up.
QFT.

Absolutely on the list, and absolutely top 5 in the league.

Look at a team like Boston. Do you think that whoever they happen to put in their net is an elite NHL goaltender? No. They simply play the sort of style (and sound defense) that creates good goaltending statistics for competent goaltenders.

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02-09-2011, 10:43 PM
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When one judges elite does it mean comparing Miller to all goalies who ever played in the NHL? Then no he is not elite, far from it.

If you compare Miller to current goalies that have played in the NHL since he came into the league, then he is a very good goalie, but elite status needs time to throw that designation at him.

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02-10-2011, 10:49 AM
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murp0837
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Here's my position. Miller is very good (maybe top tier). He does keep the Sabres in MOST games, but rarely does he steal a game. We know how well he can play with a good team in front of him based on the 06-07 seasons (and the Olympics).

However, we see very successful teams (e.g. Chicago, Washington, Detroit) who are not unwilling to make goalie changes. Does it make more sense to try to build a Stanley Cup winner by addressing the skaters, then the goaltender? If so, what is the performance disparity between Enroth, or the best available option, and Ryan Miller?

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02-10-2011, 11:33 AM
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Originally Posted by 71Zamboni View Post
When one judges elite does it mean comparing Miller to all goalies who ever played in the NHL? Then no he is not elite, far from it.

If you compare Miller to current goalies that have played in the NHL since he came into the league, then he is a very good goalie, but elite status needs time to throw that designation at him.
This exactly Miller hasn't been that good for long enough, yet.

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