23
Photo Credit: © Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

Friedman: There is an “Expectation of Ryan Miller to Anaheim”

We have every reason to believe the Canucks want to bring pending unrestricted free agent goalie Ryan Miller back in the fold next season. Is the feeling mutual?

Based on a report from Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman in this week’s edition of the always spectacular 30 Thoughts column, a third suitor may be emerging in the Miller sweepstakes.

11. Goalie market: there is a lot of expectation of Ryan Miller to Anaheim for approximately $1 million, although I’m not sure if bonuses will be added to that.

The Anaheim Ducks make sense as a destination for the 37-year-old Miller. Miller, who’s married to actress Noureen DeWoulf, wants to stay close to Los Angeles so as to be with his family as often as possible. For the Ducks, a goalie of Miller’s calibre checks off all the right boxes. Miller can mentor John Gibson and work as an insurance policy should the youngster falter or go down with injury, which happens with alarming frequency.

Is it possible, too, that the Ducks, who passed up on even making a serious offer for Miller at the deadline are having a case of non-buyers remorse? I tend to think it’s a possibility.Gibson went down with an injury in their Western Conference Finals series against the Nashville Predators and Jonathan Bernier, to the surprise of absolutely nobody, struggled to hold the fort. Is it possible they win that series if they trade for Miller? It’s too late to know at this point, but I imagine they don’t want to leave it up to chance next season.

Gibson went down with an injury in their Western Conference Finals series against the Nashville Predators and Jonathan Bernier, to the surprise of absolutely nobody, struggled to hold the fort. Is it possible they win that series if they trade for Miller? It’s too late to know at this point, but I imagine they don’t want to leave it up to chance next season.

The Canucks, try as they may, just might not have as much to offer Miller as the Ducks. They can match them in money and term, but perhaps not where it matters most: proximity to his family. That would explain why, despite their efforts to date, the Canucks haven’t been able to lock Miller up to a contract extension.

Vancouver only has Jacob Markstrom, Richard Bachman and Thatcher Demko under contract next season. One of them is ready for an extended look at the NHL level. Today’s news could force the Canucks to enter the trade or free agent market to find a suitable plan B for Miller.

  • Carl Jung

    While I would be fine with bringing Miller back for one year, I’d also be fine with waiting for the goalie game of musical chairs to drop somebody else in Vancouver’s lap for one year.

  • Ryan Miller landed a sweetheart deal in Van for 3 years and $18 Million. I won’t go as far as to say he owes, but if he signs in California for $1 Million, I’ll be disappointed.
    Ryan was treated well here and there should be some loyalty in his heart, including a home town discount.

    • Goon

      Why? He came here, he played well, he’s now nearing end of his career and wants to go somewhere for a couple years where he’ll have a chance to win. I’d be happy to see him win a cup, and that’s not happening in Vancouver.

      • IMO Ryan’s time here was average. His last year, also a contract year for him, was good and somewhat makes up for the first two years in which his play wasn’t great. He was paid $ 6 Million per year and for that amount I expect excellence, as should you.

        • He was overpaid – so what? That doesn’t oblige him to play here until the end of time. He’s free to do what he wants, and we’re not talking about a Sedin-type player who played his whole career here. He’s been here a couple years, now he’s likely to move on, and there’s *nothing* wrong with that.

    • TD

      I don’t want Miller back and I don’t know why he would want to return when he could be closer to his family. He can never make up the time he has missed with his son as a baby. The Canucks need to move on and look to the future, not sign a 37 year old goalie who was right around the league average last year.

  • Neil B

    ‘Thanks for your years of service, Mr. Miller. Good luck to you & yours on the next phase of your career.’

    Then you move on, and see what you can get from Dallas for fixing up the rest of their goalie situation. Or talk to Mr. Condon’s people, offering a zerox copy of Markstrom’s contract. Or Mr. Johnson’s people. Or…

    • apr

      Yup. I think taking Lehtonen’s salary and Nichuskin for future considerations (ie Nucks giving a third rounder when/if Nichuskin comes back to NHL) is a good starting point for a trade. I know there are ownership issues – but these two teams set up so well as trade partners and they just cant get it done.

  • Rolland

    It sounds like Miller will take a home town discount in Anaheim, close to family and a somewhat contending Ducks.
    Its time to see if Markstrom is a starter or an expensive back up, as far as that goes the market is friendly. Markstrom needs to prove himself this year. This year won’t be much better than last anyways, unless there are major surprises from up and comers. If you don’t score goals, the stoppers can only do so much. Bachman was surprisingly good the little he played.

  • Pat Quinn Way

    It’s laughable how the fanbase and bloggers like you Burkey are so happy to accept mediocrity and failure with this ridiculous ‘burn it down’, ‘trade for picks’, ‘5 year turnaround’, ‘any stopgap wil ldo’ rhetoric that is just so laughably wrong!

    The goal every year aided by cap parity is to ice a team good enough to make the playoffs and with the right management in place, making decent trades, signings and good drafting, it can be done in two or three tops – Torts did it in one with Columbus. Chiarelli did it in three in Edmonton, same in Toronto, all these teams have gone from zeros to heroes so spare me the cliches and laughers like ‘trade tanev’ and ‘re-sign miller’.

    Let Miller walk and get quality like Grubauer in net (as yet unsigned and exposed RFA by Wa, so they don’t want him) or someone else comparable in upside.

    Trade for one of many quality D up for grabs cheap (hi Vegas), dip into the UFA pool, draft players that are ready now, and get a new management team in with a plan, identity and hockey smarts – it’s not rocket science ffs.

    It can and IS being done. Wake up ffs.

  • A Loudmouthed Idiot

    If Miller is gone, my plan B would be a UFA like Anders Nilsson or Darcy Kuemper, a goalie who is on the younger side and who can platoon with Markstrom.

    • A Loudmouthed Idiot

      Don’t forget, though Miller has an NTC and a very short list of teams for which he’ll play. As the write-up points out, Anaheim considered acquiring him at the deadline and decided against it.

    • TD

      I don’t want Miller back and I don’t know why he would want to return when he could be closer to his family. He can never make up the time he has missed with his son as a baby. The Canucks need to move on and look to the future, not sign a 37 year old goalie who was right around the league average last year.

  • myshkin

    Markstrom is 27 years old so it’s time for him to take the reins. He’s never really had a chance to get on a roll due to playing behind Miller. Losing Miller to the Ducks might be a good thing.

  • wojohowitz

    In hindsight the shoulda coulda moment. Does Anaheim think they really could of used Miller in the playoffs or is Washington thinking they really needed a shut down guy like Tanev to beat the Pens.

  • truthseeker

    Why is it so many of you seem to think that if the canucks sign Miller it’s going to be for what he was making before or that he’ll be the starter? Many of you are at least implying that.

    I don’t get it. He’s hardly the worst option out there and in many ways he fits perfectly. He knows the team and is comfortable. He gets along with Markstrom. A lesser role would probably allow him to improve his numbers. And he’ll be cheap. If this is anything to go by, maybe super cheap. And short term. A year or two max. What’s not to like? The fact you just “think” it’s “time for him to go”? lol.