It’s been a crazy season for Ryan Miller, hasn’t it?. He came into the season not knowing if he would even crack Team USA’s roster for the 2014 Olympics. He started out hot, while other goalies faltered. Then almost immediately found his way back in a battle for the crease with Jonathan Quick.
With 39 games under his belt the only thing left to do is wait, knowing he’s done all he can to leave a lasting impression on team USA. Despite the fact the Olympics start today, the hockey portion of the games won’t start until next week (around the 13th) so there is still time and likely some on ice practices before team USA names their starter. To make matters worse they could always be like the Canadian team and split the first two games between Miller and Quick.
Now you’re probably wondering why this is even debatable when Jonathan Quick has a Stanley Cup and a Conn Smythe to his name. Well, you can’t count out Ryan Miller in the USA crease debate. Sure he doesn’t have flashy numbers or a Stanley Cup, but he is able to perform at a high level every night for the Buffalo Sabres. More importantly, Miller was the guy in 2010.
He was the goaltender who stood on his head and took a Team USA team who was supposed to get blown out, to within one shot of winning the gold medal. For his efforts Miller left Vancouver with an Olympic MVP and a silver medal on way to making a big name for himself.
4 years later he is back trying to make his bid to become team USA’s starter again. Is his 2.74 Goals Against Average and .923 Save Percentage good enough to match Quick’s 2.18 GAA and .911 S%? A lot more than numbers and stats will go into naming the starting netminder; experience and the teams they play behind may also enter into the equation. Either way team USA will be looking for one goaltender to backstop them into the gold medal game again in Sochi 2014.
Has Ryan Miller done enough to be named Team USA’s starter?