Thu January 2, 2014
Buffalo News sportswriter discusses Miller's Olympic selection
Buffalo Sabres goaltender Ryan Miller has earned his way to the U.S. national hockey team for the second straight Olympics. Buffalo News sportswriter Mike Harrington says Wednesday's announcement came as no surprise, but he says Miller's place on this year's team was not always an open and shut case.
"ESPN.com and USA Today had an embedded reporter in the selection process for four months. Their stories came out last night. Clearly, Miller got to the selection camp in August as the number four choice," Harrington told WBFO News.
"He's moved up the charts. Right now, it's either Miller or Jonathon Quick of the (Los Angeles) Kings as number one. It certainly should be Miler in my eyes, obviously."
Miller starred for the US in the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, earning MVP honors for the tournament and leading the team to a silver medal.
"He has a certain level of maturity to his game that we haven't seen before. He told me yesterday that he's cut down on some of his aggressiveness. He's gotten better with his hands. Better playing near the post. He's 'butterflying' less," Harrington said.
"I used a little cliche' Sunday against the Capitals, he was a sponge, he was soaking in every puck. There were no leaks. He's just not dropping any pucks out in front of the net any more."
Not only does Harrington believe Miller should be the Olympic starter, he sees the pending free agent earning a seven-year contract at year's end, whether with the Sabres or some other NHL team.