November 12, 2011

Ryan Miller's Goaltending Battle (Part II)

I still remember when Ryan Miller first came into the NHL. I wasn't too happy about it – Martin Biron was my favorite Sabre. I didn't like this new guy getting in the way, I just wanted Biron to keep his spot as starting goaltender. I wasn't happy about it for a while, and it took me up until about two months before Biron was traded when I was finally happy with Ryan Miller as the starting goaltender.
Ever since we lost Martin Biron there has been absolutely no doubt that Ryan Miller is our franchise goaltender. Nobody can beat him, he is absolutely amazing. He is the goaltender of Team USA. It also helped that all of our backups couldn't stop a basketball rolling towards then at 2 mph.

Along comes the young Swede, Jhonas Enroth. He comes up from the minors to fill the shoes of countless backups before him who never saw a minute of action, and nobody really expects anything from him. Suddenly he steps in, and 5 games later he has a 5-0 record. He's won back-to-back games when Ryan Miller was expected to start at least one of them. And Miller's been sitting there, putting up poor numbers while Enroth is sitting comfortably with a .956 save percentage and and a mere 1.34 goals against average.
This time, I'm incline the support the goaltender who has been given the nickname “Terminator” by some Sabres fans. He is putting up some god-like numbers right now, so why not ride him until he starts to drop? There's no doubt that Miller's numbers are low, at least for the moment. So let's give Enroth a chance, and maybe put up a few W's while we're waiting for the old Miller to come back.

And who knows, maybe Miller may find himself replaced sometime soon?

*  *  *  *  *

For those of you who listen to the local Buffalo sports station, WGR 550, have you been listening to Brian Koziol? Because I have been. Granted, he's never been my favorite – many times I've heard him take what a caller says and immediately flip it to back up his own point, or to make it easier to tear apart. It's always gotten on my nerves.

But now with this goaltending controversy he went from Tuesday night saying that Ryan Miller should undoubtedly be our starting goaltender to preaching Enroth as our savior last night. Well which is it? You flipped completely from one extreme to the other, by saying Enroth needs to play again tonight. I may agree with that point, but come on – don't pretend you weren't arguing the opposite only a few days later.

*  *  *  *  *

Goal scoring is anything but an issue with the Sabres recently – in the past two games they have scored a total of 11 goals. But defensively we may need a bit of an improvement – scoring 5 goals in one game should not be enough to merely send it to overtime. But that may once again go back to the goaltending controversy we're seeing right now – Miller let in 5 goals against the Jets/ex-Thrashers, while Enroth let in only 1 against the Senators. And even that one goal was the defense's fault. So I say give him a chance.

Switching to a more youthful goaltender worked once in the past, whose to say it won't work again?

~Adam Singh

No comments:

Post a Comment