Ryan Miller felt good today after his first full workout with the Sabres in nearly three weeks and coach Lindy Ruff wouldn't automatically rule him out of this weekend's games. For his part, Miller wasn't sure about this weekend -- but he was more than definitive when asked his long-term future with the team in the wake of recent rumors.
A paragraph deep in a long Edmonton Journal piece by Hall of Fame writer Jim Matheson on Sunday said Miller "wouldn't mind" a trade, and it's known the Sabres and Anaheim Ducks are talking about multiple scenarios. The Ducks had three scouts on hand Tuesday night, including GM Bob Murray, and it's believed Miller's name has come up.
"I think it's funny when you hear things like 'wouldn't mind,' " Miller said today. "That implies somebody's asked me and I've never made a comment about my status with the team. My comment about my status with the team now is I'm proud to be a Sabre, I'm excited for what we can accomplish moving forward and I want to be a part of it. There's no reason for me to want to leave the situation. We have great new ownership who's excited to put a winner on the ice and I want to be a part of it. For me to want to change that situation and get out, I think the grass doesn't get much greener than it is here."
Miller, who has two years left after this season on a deal that pays $6.25 million annually, has a limited no-trade clause in his contract where he can submit a list of eight teams he would not accept a trade to.
"I've never in my time here talked to Lindy, Darcy or ownership about a trade and they've never come to me asking for any options," Miller said. "I can understand why there's speculation. I went through a tough stretch of hockey and didn't have a chance to dig myself out yet because of the injury. I know I need to be better and I'm working on that. For me to say I don't want to be here just because of that? I have a long history here. I feel like I've grown up here and this is where I want to win.
"... The fans love hockey. I've worked hard as a player and I've worked hard to be part of the community. I feel part of things here. Why would I want to leave that?"
As for the daily walking wounded report, Jordan Leopold and Patrick Kaleta were not on the ice at practice. Leopold is out for this weekend but could return next week. Kaleta and Tyler Ennis could both play Friday against Detroit. Paul Szczechura was returned to Rochester, likely in an effort to save salary cap space with no game again until Friday in case he's still needed.
Click below to hear Miller's interview, which also includes his thoughts on often being apart from his wife, California-based actress Noureen DeWulf: