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This Day in Buffalo Sports History: Staying put

   July 18, 2008 -- The Sabres were starting to get the reputation that potential free agents seemed to leave more often than not. After all, Daniel Briere and Chris Drury in July of 2007, and Brian Campbell had been traded to San Jose in the spring of 2008.

   But Ryan Miller might have been the most important player on the roster at that time, and he decided he wasn't going anywhere for a while.

   Miller signed a five-year, $31.25 million extension that would take effect in 2009 and keep him with the Sabres through 2014.

   "I was really happy with the way it went," Miller said at the time about the deal, that eventually would make him one of the league's highest-paid goalies. "There wasn't that much back and forth. They made a good offer and projected what the marketplace is now going forward with the cap. It's a fair deal for both sides. I just like the fact they showed faith in me. They want to build a team with core guys."

   "I don't think we're paying for potential here," general manager Darcy Regier said. "He's established himself as one of the top young goaltenders, wWhen you're talking about conference finals, playoff wins, what he's done in the playoffs, what he's done in his career."

   Miller has emerged as one of hockey's best goalies in that span, winning a Vezina Trophy and leading Team USA to a silver medal in the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver.

--- Budd Bailey

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