Ryan Miller's time as a Sabre is over. The longtime Buffalo goaltender has been traded to the St. Louis Blues in exchange for another goaltender, Jaroslav Halak, in a big five-player, two-draft pick trade that also includes NHL forwards Steve Ott and Chris Stewart.
To Buffalo: Jaroslav Halak, Chris Stewart, prospect William Carrier, 2015 first-round pick, 2016 conditional third-round pick.
To St. Louis: Ryan Miller, Steve Ott.
History led to deal
Blues goaltenders have lacked that extra something that makes a team and fanbase confident heading to the postseason. The team hopes Ryan Miller changes that.
The Blues are one of the top teams in the Western Conference, but goaltending has been seen as a weakness -- perhaps their only weakness -- for several seasons now. With Miller, they're acquiring a piece who they hope can carry them to their first Stanley Cup since entering the league in 1967.
Stewart, 26, has been a consistent 15-goal scorer in the NHL for several seasons now. He's scored nearly 30 goals twice in his NHL career, back in 2009-10 and 2010-11, when he was traded midseason from Colorado to St. Louis. He's on a two-year deal that expires in the summer of 2015.
Ott probably has more staying power than any agitator in the NHL, other than maybe Matt Cooke. The 31-year-old has played 673 games in the NHL, largely for the Dallas Stars but most recently with Buffalo after a 2012 trade. Ott's four-year contract expires this summer.
Carrier, a 2013 second-round selection by the Blues, is in his fourth QMJHL season. The 19-year-old has 17 goals and 39 assists in 59 games split between Cape Breton and Drummondville this season.
Miller has been in trade talks for years, and he's an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season. Buffalo gets something in return for its longtime goaltender, who we all assumed would be gone as the Sabres quickly plummeted to the bottom of the NHL.
The biggest trade of the 2014 NHL trade deadline is already complete.