Ryan Miller finally has his shot at redemption in the NHL.
Hailed for years as one of the top goalies in the league, Miller’s time guarding the net for the Buffalo Sabres was an almost nightly repeat of stellar goaltending hidden behind headlines of a team battling through one of it’s worst seasons in franchise history.
Any win Buffalo attained was usually at the hands of Miller, but when a team is spiraling, credit is only sporadically given where credit is more often due. That might have even contributed to the Los Angeles Kings‘ Jonathan Quick getting the start in Sochi for Team USA, despite Miller taking Team USA all the way to the gold medal game in 2010.
On Saturday night, the St. Louis Blues continued their dominance in a 4-1 win over the Nashville Predators in the Music City. Two goals from Patrik Berglund and goals from Vladimir Tarasenko and Alexander Steen solidified the win, but Miller’s 30 saves on 31 shots kept the Predators from coming anywhere near St. Louis on the scoreboard.
While Miller certainly needed the type of structure the Blues create in front of the net to bring recognition back to his game, St. Louis needed the type of net minding Miller provides to bring them back to serious Stanley Cup contention. It’s netminding neither backup goalie Brian Elliott nor former goalie Jaroslav Halak consistently provided. It’s also netminding that now has the Blues leading the NHL with less than a month left until the playoffs.
And although only in St. Louis a few weeks, Miller has already proved he never was the “veteran” goalie on is way out of the league as so many called from their seats in Buffalo. Instead, he’s the goalie about to lead a team into one of the greatest playoff races hockey history has ever seen, with every intention of going all the way.