When St. Louis Blues general manager Doug Armstrong held his season-end media availability last month, he made one thing certain regarding his goaltending situation for 2014-15: "I view Jake Allen coming in here next year competing for starts ... Jake Allen's partner is going to have to hold Jake Allen out. Jake Allen is going to have to compete with his partner for ice time."
Joining Allen in the St. Louis net next season will be Brian Elliott, not Ryan Miller, as the 29-year old inked a three-year, $7.5 million extension Monday, according to Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
With Allen under contract for another year and Elliott back for three more, that means that Miller will either find his rights traded before free agency begins or he'll hit the open market in July, or both.
Miller posted a 10-8-1 record and .903 save-percentage in 19 regular season games after being acquired from Buffalo. In the playoffs things got worse as Miller and the Blues blew a 2-0 series lead against the Chicago Blackhawks and lost four straight. The netminder posted an ugly .897 save-percentage in the series.
After St. Louis was eliminated, Miller addressed his future, via the Post-Dispatch:
“We’re through with the hockey part now, and we’ll have to see where we’re at, see how they feel about me,” Miller said. “I definitely like St. Louis. Like the guys, like the team, but we’ll see what they feel about the playoffs.”
Last month, TSN reported that Armstrong reached out to Miller's agent and expressed interest in bringing the netminder back. A long-term commitment was also mentioned, so either the Blues re-considered their options or the price was just too high for them.
If, as rumored, Miller wants to move somewhere on the west coast to be closer to his wife, actress Noureen DeWulf, would the Anaheim Ducks give Freddie Andersen and John Gibson some more time to develop before making either of them the hands-down no. 1? And just how happy are the San Jose Sharks with Antti Niemi after this season?
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