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Will tomorrow be Ryan Miller’s last start in Buffalo?

Feb 27, 2014, 1:25 PM EDT

From John Vogl of the Buffalo News:

The Sabres don’t play another home game before Wednesday’s trade deadline, so if Ryan Miller is indeed traded by March 5, yes, tomorrow versus San Jose would be his last start for Buffalo at First Niagara Center.

The big question is, which teams are in the running to acquire the pending unrestricted free agent goalie? St. Louis has been the speculative front-runner all season, but if you believe what general manager Doug Armstrong said recently, the Blues are going to give Jaroslav Halak a chance to prove himself in the playoffs.

Minnesota is perhaps another possible landing spot, given Josh Harding‘s health issues and the fact Niklas Backstrom has struggled this season. Then again, Backstrom is signed through 2015-16 and the Wild aren’t even guaranteed of making the playoffs this season, let alone making a push for the Stanley Cup.

Related: Sabres GM wants to trade Miller to a contender, get ‘value’

  1. zetaone - Feb 27, 2014 at 1:32 PM

    As a Sabres fan, Miller deserves to go to a contender. Also, at this point, I don’t see him being super eager to resign in July, so if we lose a top 10 goalie and don’t get anything for him (and to a lesser extent Ott if he isn’t resigned), it’ll be pretty upsetting.

    Make Leino part of the package too please.

    Also, dear god do not resign John Scott. He’s just a liability at this point and serves no purpose for the team going forward.

    • gtthom86 - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:02 PM

      miller is far less that not “super eager”, there is a zero chance he resigns here. murray and miller himself have basically came right out and said that in the strongest terms they could while still being politically correct about it. no way leino gets traded either, due to his long and over priced contract – but i do see him being bought out this off season.

      i’d love to see him go to the blues, and i’m not sold on the recent press coming out of st. louis. but im sure he will go to whoever will give up the most for him, which obviously is going to be a contender anyway. he won’t be here next year, so whatever they get for him will be better than nothing

      • shutmdownd - Feb 27, 2014 at 5:25 PM

        why would they buy out Leino? He’s gotta stay on the team just for the simple fact that they are gonna struggle to get to the salary cap floor unless the overpay for some free agents this summer… Same for Stafford, they are bums but thats like $10 mil between the two, plus if we trade Miller and/or Ott And Moulson there goes another $10 mil cause you know they are gonna get either picks or cheap prospects, i would think we are stuck with them…

      • zetaone - Feb 27, 2014 at 5:41 PM

        Very good point shutmdownd, I hadn’t thought of that. It’s kind of unnerving to think that we’re just going to over pay some UFAs this year to hit the floor when in 3-5 years when our higher rated prospects come off their entry deals, we won’t be able to afford them and end up dismantled like the 2007 president’s cup trophy team.

      • zetaone - Feb 27, 2014 at 5:49 PM

        Though to that end, I wouldn’t mind snagging Statsny in July. We need that #1 center. But good luck convincing him to signing in Buffalo :/ Though getting upgraded from 2nd line center to 1st once again may be enough for him.

      • gtthom86 - Feb 27, 2014 at 6:08 PM

        why would they buy out Leino? – how about 10 goals in 120 games as a sabre? he’s a complete bust as everyone knows.

        whats the logic in keeping him around just because he has an inane 4.5 million dollar salary? we could use that money to pick up FAs or extend the deals of our young core. hell over pay ott or moulson, leino is a know commodity – crap.

      • elrock7 - Feb 27, 2014 at 7:24 PM

        Aside from the Blues, I cant think of another contender that is in the market for a #1 goalie.

        Sabres could be behind the 8 ball on this one.

  2. areaman714 - Feb 27, 2014 at 1:38 PM

    Would be interesting if the Ducks do a Hiller package for him, if only to keep him going to another West team chasing them.

    • areaman714 - Feb 27, 2014 at 1:39 PM

      Keep him FROM going to another West team . . .

    • jpelle82 - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:57 PM

      never going to happen…did you see hiller in the olympics? contract for contract makes no sense. plus hiller has a .935 sv% in 20 playoff games.

  3. jb8588 - Feb 27, 2014 at 1:53 PM

    Even though McPhee is an idiot and needs to shore up the D a little bit, something tells me the Caps are going to have a serious run at him. They have a few young guys that can possibly be expendable, but Caps make the most sense to me IMO. Hiller has had some pretty solid starts this season, so I don’t see that happening.

    • joey4id - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:26 PM

      According to some reports WSH, St. Louis, Wild and Pens are on the short list of possible destinations.

      • elrock7 - Feb 27, 2014 at 7:26 PM

        Sorry, I forgot about Pitt, they need him more than St.Louis does.

  4. pi2000 - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:15 PM

    Hiller is streaky, he’s not been very good lately. And when he’s bad, he’s very very bad. Anderson has played well but only has 18 games NHL experience. If I’m ANA, I’m not comfortable riding either of those into the playoffs. You put Miller on that team, they instantly become Cup favorites.

    • bcsteele - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:22 PM

      One would argue the same for the Blues; Miller will probably make any true contender this year the favorite if he plays up to his par.

  5. djshnooks - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:39 PM

    Miller is as competitive as anyone and he is pissed about being passed over for the Olympic starting job, after having better stats and winning USA silver in 2010.

    If he goes to a team like Anaheim or St. Louis…they WILL win the cup this year.

    • jpelle82 - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:13 PM

      he’s shown he cant win the big games. he gets very close though. never won a game 7, never past the conf finals, 2010 gold medal ot goal was weak…even in the winter classic he loses in a shootout, he just doesnt have that signature win. you dont win silver by the way, you get it by losing.

  6. bufffalojoe - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:42 PM

    Pens is where miller will end up! That’s why he didn’t play in the Olympics, Why drive the price up on a guy your going to trade for.

  7. mobil4life - Feb 27, 2014 at 5:26 PM

    Sabres fan here. Miller sucks in the playoffs. Thanks.

  8. krebsy34 - Feb 27, 2014 at 7:37 PM

    Let’s just say something happens were they weren’t able to move Miller. Not that he isn’t going to get moved, cause he more than likely is. It’d just be nice for a team to say “Ya know what, you’ve given us everything you’ve got. We’re not gonna move you (because maybe the squads that came calling were not gonna make the playoffs or not go far or whatever) so you don’t have to worry about moving right now” or something along those lines. Just the whole loyalty factor. I understand that it isn’t possible and that business is business, I’m just saying it’d be nice to see something like that. Especially for players who have been or still are the face of the franchise.

  9. ralphwilsonisrich - Feb 27, 2014 at 8:02 PM

    He deserves to be on a winning team. Did his time in hell here Buffalo. Nice job Darcy screwing the franchise up

  10. bluesdroogie - Feb 27, 2014 at 8:10 PM

    Would Buffalo take Halak for Miller straight out in a sign and trade? Or does Buffalo want more? we can throw in Stewart, but then the Blues need a high pick also. I am not convinced at all with what Armstrong has said. Is he supposed to come out and say that he has no faith in his goalie, NO. He has to say what he did. They have given Halak every chance this season and he has been nothing but the epitome of inconsistency.

    • stevedurbano - Feb 28, 2014 at 11:54 AM

      Miller for Halak straight up? No way. I don’t even think Stewart thrown in makes it happen. But what it really comes down to is whether the Blues think he can be signed long term after this year. You can’t gut the team for him if he’s going to walk. The Blues also need to not make the same mistake with Jake Allen that they made with Bishop and trade him before they know if he’s big league caliber. Right now I think Hitch is being too loyal to Halak and Elliott when he could be giving Allen a shot. I don’t think he’d embarrass himself based on last year.

  11. westsidewilly - Feb 28, 2014 at 1:04 PM

    Here’s my grand plan for Sabre domination, involving a three-way trade and a fourth bilateral:
    (1) Miller to STL for Halak and the Blues #2 in both ’14 and ’15;
    (2) Martin St. Louis from TB to NYR;
    (3) Callahan to BUF;
    (4) Moulson and and Rangers’ #2 (either ’14 or ’15) to TB.

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