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Shuffle Up: The year Ryan Miller broke

Scott Pianowski
Roto Arcade

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Down year for a big-name goalie (USAT)

You should know the Shuffle Up rules by now, but we'll do a quick refresher. What's happened to this point is merely an audition; we're trying to rank the players based on how they'll play for the balance of the season. Consider basic Yahoo! scoring categories as we do this dance: wins, shutouts, save percentage and goals-against average. There are also contextual factors to consider, of course (supporting cast, job security), not to mention age and career arc and injury concerns.

Injured goalies are kept off the list, which is why Miikka Kiprusoff isn't here. (The way he's been playing, no big loss. We don't miss you, Kiprusoft.)

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Your respectful disagreement is always welcome, just be sure to support your argument; further the conversation, gamers. Win the debate, you might win the rank. I'll add comments as the day goes along, and this list might be tweaked during that period.

Game on. Make the jump, meet up between the pipes

1. Tuukka Rask
2. Henrik Lundqvist
3. Antti Niemi
4. Carey Price
5. Corey Crawford
6. Pekka Rinne
7. Craig Anderson
8. Jaroslav Halak

The Bruins have the best penalty kill in the league (95 percent is obscene), and while the defense has a lot to say about that, your goalie is always your most important penalty killer. Rask has earned the yellow (well, black and gold) jersey.

While I doubt anyone is giving Halak away at a notable discount in your league, I'd suggest seeing (in a stealth-mode manner) if you can acquire him now. The Blues still have outstanding depth on the blue line (they're allowing just 22.9 shots per game, lowest in the league) and their brief slump was mostly driven by Brian Elliott's terrible play (I've watched tape on every goal he's allowed; Elliott has been horrendous, no two ways about it).

9. Viktor Fasth
10. Jonathan Quick
11. Kari Lehtonen
12. Marc-Andre Fleury
13. Martin Brodeur
14. Mike Smith
15. Jimmy Howard
16. Cory Schneider
17. Roberto Luongo
18. Niklas Backstrom
19. Ben Scrivens
20. Ilya Bryzgalov
21. Ryan Miller

Howard is still a quality goalie, but he's not the stand-on-his-head type – without the right support in place, I can't view him as a Top 10 option. Detroit might sneak into the playoffs, but the Red Wings aren't a major threat to go deep. It's a top-heavy roster, and obviously there's no legitimate replacement for Nicklas Lidstrom.

Miller's save percentage sits at .916, the same number he posted in the previous two seasons (and right around his career mark of .915). But with the Sabres allowing a conference-worst 33.4 shots per game, Miller doesn't have much of a chance. Heck, Buffalo's uninspired play also got Lindy Ruff fired - the longest-tenured coach in the game. Maybe Tuesday's 2-1 win at Tampa Bay (against a strong Bolts offense) can be a springboard, albeit it came on the heels of a four-game losing streak.

How desperate are you feeling today, Miller owners? Who's the worst goalie you'd move him for right now, 1-for-1?

22. Devan Dubnyk
23. Semyon Varlamov
24. Cam Ward
25. Braden Holtby
26. James Reimer
27. Anders Lindback
28. Ondrej Pavelec
29. Evgeni Nabokov
30. Sergei Bobrovsky
31. Jose Theodore
32. Steve Mason
33. Ray Emery
34. Jonathan Bernier
35. Jacob Markstrom

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