Kyle Brodziak , Kevin Shattenkirk, Nino Niederreiter, Ryan Miller

Struggling Miller needs to ‘get through this stretch and be there when it counts’


“Ultimately he has to make the big saves. That’s why we brought him here. He has to make the saves you’re not supposed to make.”

— Blues general manager Doug Armstrong, on why he acquired goalie Ryan Miller prior to the trade deadline (Canadian Press)

“I’ve got to find a way to make a save. It’s been two weeks of this. I’ve got to find a way out of it myself. It’s a tough stretch of hockey for me as far as goals-against go. I don’t feel like it’s too far away, as far as my game, but it’s got to be better. Just need to get through this stretch and be there when it counts.”

— Miller, after allowing four goals on just 13 shots last night versus Minnesota, the third straight start he’s allowed four goals and lost in regulation (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

Miller’s save percentage in those three starts? A lowly .813. And his overall save percentage in 17 appearances for the Blues is just .903, a significantly lower number than the .923 mark he registered in Buffalo prior to the trade.

So, yes, like he said, he’s “got to find a way to make a save.”

The good news is, the playoffs haven’t started yet, and that’s where the Miller trade will really be judged. “When it counts.”

The potentially bad news is, the Blues’ current slide may end up costing them first place in the Central Division, and that would result in a first-round match-up with the defending champs from Chicago. Who are pretty tough to beat “when it counts.”

Report: Islanders cut first-rounder Barzal from camp

Mathew Barzal
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It seems Mathew Barzal has played in his last game in a New York Islanders’ uniform for a little while.

Barzal took part in the Islanders’ preseason finale against the Washington Capitals on Sunday, but after that contest the Islanders decided to return him to WHL Seattle, per Newsday’s Arthur Staple.

He was taken with the 16th overall pick in 2015 NHL Entry Draft. That selection was well-traveled as it originally belonged to the Pittsburgh Penguins, but was involved in the David Perron trade and then moved to the Islanders as part of Edmonton’s deal to get Griffin Reinhart.

Barzal is noteworthy for his skill and speed, but he may have slipped in the draft due to a knee injury he sustained during the 2014-15 campaign.

The Islanders also reassigned Kirill Petrov, Kevin Czuczman, Scott Mayfield, and Adam Pelech to the AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

Torres offered in-person hearing, potentially setting up long suspension

Torres hit

What will Raffi Torres get this time?

The 33-year-old forward that has become known primarily for his controversial hits has once again put himself in the sights of the NHL’s Department of Players Safety. They confirmed that he was offered an in-person hearing following his hit on Jakub Silfverberg Saturday night. He declined the opportunity to meet with them face-to-face, but the offer itself is an important detail because it gives the league the option to suspend him for more than five games.

It certainly seems like the stage is set for a lengthy suspension. While Torres is not considered a repeat offender as his last suspension came more than 18 months ago, the NHL still retains the right to consider his history when deciding on this matter.

Among other incidents, he was once was banned from 25 games for his hit on Marian Hossa in 2012, although it was later reduced to 21 contests after an appeal. The NHL found that Torres was guilty of breaking three rules for that hit; namely interference, charging, and illegally hitting the head. The NHL is reviewing Torres’ latest incident for the same three violations.

You can see the hit below:

And here it is slowed down:

Torres got a match penalty and Silfverberg left the game. Fortunately, Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said that Silfverberg could have returned, but was kept out for precautionary reasons.