Niagara Gazette

Pro Sports

December 1, 2011

Miller laughs off trade rumors, close to return

BUFFALO —  

Goalie Ryan Miller had heard the trade rumor, the one about him not minding if the Sabres dealt him. But multiple ones? He wasn’t aware the chatter had grown.

“I thought there was one specifically I was going to have to talk about because (coach) Lindy (Ruff) was joking with me yesterday about it,” an upbeat Miller said Wednesday after practicing inside the First Niagara Center, his first full session since suffering what the Sabres say was a concussion Nov. 12.

Miller, who Ruff said could possibly return this weekend, laughed off the rumors, saying, “The grass doesn’t get much greener than it does here.”

“I’ve never, in my time here, talked to Lindy, (general manager) Darcy (Regier), ownership about a trade,” Miller said. “And they’ve never come to me asking for any options.”

Miller has it good here, you know.

“I have a long history here. I feel like I’ve grown up here,” Miller said. “This is where I want to win. … There’s no better place to win. The fans love hockey. I think that I’ve worked hard as a player and I’ve worked hard to be a part of the community. I feel a part of things here. Why would I want to leave that?”

The 31-year-old understands the rumors, though. Prior to getting steamrolled by Boston’s Milan Lucic, Miller struggled, going 1-5 with a 4.15 goals-against average and .865 save percentage. Meanwhile, rookie backup Jhonas Enroth, a future No. 1, couldn’t lose.

“I can understand why there’s speculation. I went through a tough stretch of hockey,” Miller said. “I haven’t had a chance to dig myself out yet with the injury. I know I need to be better, and I’m working on that. But for me to say that I don’t want to be here just because of that. No.”

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