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Ryan Miller: 2010-2011 Report Card

It's time to put the finishing touches on the 2010-2011 season for the Buffalo Sabres. Here is a complete report card of every single player that played any amount of time with the Sabres this season. The journey began with Luke Adam and will conclude in a month with Mike Weber. Thanks to Japers Rink and Mile High Hockey for the inspiration.

It's finally time to grade the team MVP, Ryan Miller.

Ryan Miller

#30 / Goalie / Buffalo Sabres



Jul 17, 1980

Contract: Signed through the 2013-2014 season at $6.25 million

2010 Grade: 9.3


2010 - Ryan Miller






















Introduction: Ryan Miller has earned many nicknames and held many titles throughout his career: he's been known as Miller Time, Captain America, Mr. Softee, is a Vezina trophy winner and is the leader of this Sabres team in everything but a letter on his jersey. He's watched TV with Shaq, he's a master of Yo' Momma jokes, and his armpits are definitely dry, as we found out five times a game this year. As for his play this season, while it was a step down from his Vezina season of last year it was still a very respectable campaign for the veteran netminder. Let's break things down after the break.

Key Stat: Miller's even strength save percentage this season was virtually identical to what it was last season when he won the Vezina -- .924 this year as opposed to .928 last year. It's his power play and shorthanded save percentages that really took a hit this season -- .886 and .875 respectively, versus .919 and .966 last season. If he's going to get back to "his Vezina form," it simply comes down to the fact that Buffalo has to be better on special teams.

Did You Know: Miller has had exactly five shutouts in each of the last three seasons after earning only seven total from 2002-2008. His two shutouts this postseason tie him for the NHL playoff lead with Roberto Luongo, despite playing in nine fewer games than Lungo has as of this writing.

Thumbs Up: Miller was a big part of the Sabres streak to the playoffs -- check out his GAA from January to April: 2.81, 2.61, 2.39, 1.16. He feasts on division opponents, going 12-6-1 in the Northeast, and is one of the rare Sabres who performs better at home than on the road, with more wins and a better GAA in HSBC Arena than not. Had a career best shutout streak this season at 161:35 thanks to back-to-back shutouts against Columbus and Ottawa. Made the sixth most saves in the NHL this year, though that was possible because he faced the sixth most shots in the NHL this year. Though the sample size is small, #30 was a perfect two-for-two when asked to stop a penalty shot. Miller is clearly respected in the locker room by his teammates; they voted him MVP despite his semi-down year. He's also become a much more entertaining interview and gave us a memorable tiff with The Buffalo News this year.

Thumbs Down: Miller ranked 23rd in the NHL in GAA and 18th in save percentage, not necessarily numbers that warrant the third biggest cap hit amongst goalies in the NHL. Miller was not in the top 60 goalies in the NHL in shorthanded save percentage, and his .886 save percentage on the PP was average at best. Though he only faced eight total shots, his .500 save percentage in the shootout is a far cry from the dominant force he's capable of being. Seemed out of position more often this season than last due to his over-aggressiveness when challenging the shooter.

Voting: On a scale of one to ten, one being the lowest and ten being the highest, grade Ryan Miller on his season according to the expectations you had for him. If he met them, give him a five or a six. If he eclipsed them, aim for a seven or beyond. If he failed to meet them, give him a lower number relating to how poorly he missed the target.

Topics Of Discussion: Is Miller worth his large salary? How much time off will he get next year with Enroth emerging as a capable backup? Will he ever repeat his Vezina numbers or was that an aberration?