2014 Winter Olympics US Men’s Hockey Player Profile: Ryan Miller
Buffalo Sabres goaltender Ryan Miller hopes to follow his stellar performance as the starting goalie for the U.S. Men’s Hockey Team in the last Winter Olympics when he heads to Sochi for the 2014 games. In the 2010 Vancouver games, he helped the USA hockey team earn a silver medal and was named MVP of the tournament. He added the Vezina Trophy to his collection that year, solidifying one of the best seasons for an NHL goalie in history.
Despite eventually being drafted by the Sabres, Miller grew up about an hour away from Hockey Town in East Lansing, Michigan. He took over as goalie in youth hockey after becoming frustrated with the performance of his teammate in the net. His father, Dean Miller, eventually put him in goal and the rest is history.
Ryan comes from a massive hockey family. In addition to his father being a hockey coach, his brother Drew Miller currently plays for the Detroit Red Wings while his cousins Kelly Miller, Kip Miller and Kevin Miller all played in the NHL. Like Ryan, his brother and his cousins all attended Michigan State University.
At Michigan State, Ryan set a record for most career shutouts with 26 and won the Hobey Baker award in 2001. In addition to his cousins and brother who went on to play in the NHL, Ryan also had five more members of his family play hockey for Michigan State, including his grandfather, father and uncle.
In 2007, Miller played in the NHL All-Star game for the Eastern Conference, and he lead the Sabres to their second consecutive conference final. After the 2010 season, with all the success he experienced, his team started to spiral downwards, culminating with Miller’s worst statistical year in 2012-13.
Now in 2014, the biggest story around Miller is the ever present rumor of a looming trade. With the Sabres looking to rebuild, Miller is seen as a good piece to move as he is facing free agency at the end of the season. Since the Sabres aren’t looking too good right now, it’s in Miller’s best interest to shine with the USA hockey team in Sochi in hopes to continue his successful career with a team that he could lead to the playoffs once again.
Miller is an exciting goalie with a unique, aggressive style of goaltending that certainly caught the attention of international hockey fans in 2010. For the sake of the USA squad, he will hopefully shows off his skills once again in Sochi.