Ryan Miller, Steve Ott Dealt To St. Louis

The first bombshell of the NHL trade season hit late Friday as the St. Louis Blues acquired goaltender Ryan Miller and forward Steve Ott from the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for Jaroslav Halak, Chris Stewart, prospect William Carrier, a first-round draft pick in 2015 and a third-round draft pick in 2016.

Ott, 31, who had been on many fans’ short list of potential trade targets for the Blackhawks; he has nine goals and 11 assists in 59 games.

Miller, 33, was open about his willingness to be dealt out of Buffalo to help the rebuild. He had long been rumored to be on his way to St. Louis, and Friday that became reality. Miller will join TJ Oshie and David Backes, teammates with the USA team in Sochi, in St. Louis.

Both players will be unrestricted free agents this summer.

Stewart, 26, has one season left on his contract at $4.125M and has 15 goals, 11 assists and 112 penalty minutes in 58 games this season.

Halak will be an unrestricted free agent this summer as well, and had fallen out of favor in St. Louis. The 28-year-old netminder has a .917 save percentage this season with the Blues.

Carrier, a 19-year-old forward, was a second round pick by the Blues in 2013 and has five goals and 10 assists in 20 games with Drummondville in the QMJHL after a mid-season trade. He started the season with Cape Breton, where he posted 41 points (12 goals, 29 assists) in 39 games.

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33 Responses to Ryan Miller, Steve Ott Dealt To St. Louis

  1. JS says:

    Ryan Miller- 33 years old. .916 career regular season save percentage. .917 playoff

    Yuroslavakalaha Halak- 28 years old. .917 regular season. .923 playoff.

    I don’t think Ott is an upgrade over Stewart really.

    And they gave up a first and third?

    I LOVE this deal if I’m a Buffalo fan. I really like this deal as a Hawks fan.

  2. Phil says:

    Yikes, the Blues are going for it right here right now. As much as I can’t stand Ott, he is a pain in the ass to play against and will mesh well with the Backes and the rough and tumblers. Blues PK better get tough, as they are likely to be busy boys. Miller will no doubt enjoy the change of scenery. Well done Blues. The race is on.

    I still can never root for those guys.

  3. Travis says:

    As a Hawks fan, I really like this deal. Last year, we beat Quick, Howard, and Rask in playoff series. Miller doesn’t scare me any more than those three.

    Blues just got older and lost draft picks. Me likey.

  4. Tab Bamford says:

    The Sabres also get a 2014 first round pick if St. Louis makes Western Conference Finals this year or if Miller re-signs with Blues

  5. scottie p says:

    Ryan miller is to j halak as chris Stewart is to ott. Stewart a little better hence the draft picks. Doesn’t seem like much happened. Hawks should deal pirri for something useful if they aren’t going to use him

  6. SouthSideHawkMan says:

    Ive been on the Ott bandwagon for the last 2 seasons. I’m not going to down play this move. On paper Stl is a better team then Chicago. The question is can Stl handle being hunted instead of the hunter. I’m not sure but if I’m a blues fan its cup or bust.

  7. Rufus T. Firefly says:

    Blues are going for it. Wow. I actually love this deal for the Blues. Miller playing behind that Hitchcock defense and Ott? Absolutely huge.

  8. ebonyraptor says:

    I agree with Phil and Rufus – I think this trade makes Sr. Louis a better team. Miller should be better than Halak was and where Stewart has more offensive upside than Ott, but he’s inconsistent. Ott will provide consistent physical play and another guy who is good at faceoffs. They had to pay with tops picks and a top prospect but they just pushed all their chips in. If I’m a Blues fan (and thank God I’m not) I am overjoyed with this trade because it is a bold “all in” move and that’s what I want my team to do.

    From a Hawks perspective the road to repeat just got tougher.

  9. wall says:

    Tab, why do you have a picture of one of the Foo-fighters here?

  10. TJ says:

    I’m hearing through several sources that the Hawks are trying to trade Bickell. Whether or not this happens remains to be seen. Should be interesting over the next few days.

  11. Dickie Dunn says:

    “hearing through several sources that the Hawks are trying to trade Bickell.” Good Luck with that? Considering what Bickell has shown so far this season (and the contract), it’s difficult to imagine any team making a deal.

  12. Dickie Dunn says:

    ” it is a bold “all in” move” — I love it when teams do this…or even just overpay for an Iginla, and THEN DON’T WIN. Full speed ahead!

  13. ebonyraptor says:

    Dickie – Absolutely! Hope it blows up in their face and they’re worse for it in the future. But if I were a Blues fan I’d be happy that my team made a bold trade … and then I’d reserve the right to second guess them if it doesn’t work :)

  14. TJ says:

    Dickinson Dunn, nobody likes the guys who only show up in playoffs right? Bickell was a force last year and would have garnered way more money on open market. He shows up big time in playoffs and that’s something most teams would like. I’d much rather have a guy that shows up in playoffs as opposed to only in the regular season.

  15. Dickie Dunn says:

    TJ – good points. But, it seems that Stan would have to believe he was paying for a player who “matured” and would be a force during the regular season as well(?). Does Boston pay Lucic only to shows up big time in playoffs? I don’t blame Bickell at all for “cashing-in”, and I would like to believe he isn’t intentionally coasting until the post season. My comment was from an imagined point-of-view of GMs around the league probably not willing to pay premium value and maybe hesitant to allow the Hawks to dump salary.

  16. Rufus T. Firefly says:

    Bickell is untradeable. He isn’t going anywhere. The Blues trade is absolutely huge. On paper there is no question in my mind that they are the team to be in the entire NHL. They are wicked deep and defensive minded in the sorts of players that get you to a cup. Hate that team, but I can’t live in denial on them. I don’t really worry about Anaheim.

  17. TJ says:

    Dickie Dunn,

    Good points as well. I agree Bowman paid him for the regular season as well. Bickell is very inconsistent and always will be. I believe after blues made pitch for Miller that the Hawks will respond by making a move. If they make a move they will certainly have to trade a guy like Bickell to make room for salary cap reasons. I don’t think it’s a stretch to see Bickell end up somewhere like Florida.

  18. wall says:

    I agree Rufus- WHO would want Bickell??? Based on the way he Hasn’t skated this year… people here are blind if they think 29 can just “push” a button and be great in Playoffs again… He IS NOT SKATING well… which greatly suggests his knees are bothering him…

    Can his knees get better? SURE. If they do- 29 could be a great asset once again…
    Until he shows he can skate well again- and be involved in plays… any GM who takes on 29 would be crazy… Unless- there are other “cheap/controllable” assets involved (37, draft pick, other) –

    Blues- Someone mentioned earlier this year that the Blues could be very good for a long time if they decided to spend the money ( that was me!!!). Have nice cap space going forward (next year, and good tied up core guys)… Well looks like they are going for it!!! AND many $$$millions to sign a few good forwards next year!!! Even with overpaying Miller if they want to!!!

    To stay w/ Blues Hawks will need another “prospect or 2″ to really be Saad types next year… or trade 27 or 8 to Buy another asset… ( OR dump 29… OR 29 get healthy)
    SO BICKELL- could be the Bad Contract that handcuffs Hawks!!!

  19. Joe says:

    So let me get this straight. The Blues exchange two comparable goaltenders and swap two comparable forwards and for that they give Buffalo a 2015 First Round Pick, a 3rd in 2016, and possibly another First in 2014??? Are you kidding me??

  20. JS says:

    Blues still lack a top of the line scorer.

    And did no one look at the numbers I posted comparing Halak and Miller? Not sure why people think Miller is such an upgrade over Halak.

    This is a complete lateral trade that the Blues gave up a lot to make.

  21. Dickie Dunn says:

    Just my opinion – I wouldn’t hand St.L the Cup yet. **IF** the Hawks are able to return to playing their (playoffs) game – TEAM defense in three zones, transition, and puck control, I believe they are the team to beat.

  22. SouthSideHawkMan says:

    JS I think the point your missing is Halak has been playing in front of a top defense where Miller has been playing infront of one the the worst teams for several years. I have a hard time believing millers numbers go down. This is a huge fucking deal for Stl!

  23. wall says:

    JS- I am not a huge fan of Miller… And yes they gave up picks… BUT- Everyone else claims Miller is great (I think he is good, and Bigger than Halak, and HUNGRY for a title)…
    so Based on Intangibles w/ Miller/OTT… looks positive for Blues… and they will be even harder to play…

    But to my point about Blues spending money… When I mentioned earlier in Year… some Poo-poo’d me- cuz Blues were close to Cap- BUT I was really looking to next year w/ some core “tied up” and open space + talented cheap youth… IF they decided to spend- they would be dangerous… Looks like they Decided… + the Veteran Intangibles this year–could make the difference.

    Of course, if they tank in 1st round… perhaps there will be a “change of tune” and direction for next year…

  24. JS says:

    http://objectivenhl.blogspot.com/2011/05/team-effects-and-even-strength-save.html

    Halak also carried the 8 seed Habs to the ECF in 2010. He also had a .935 in the 2 playoff games he played last year. Halak is a really good goalie and significantly younger than Miller.

    This is a completely lateral move.

  25. JS says:

    I was the one that poo-poo’d it, Wall. :)

    That link should help explain the difference in team won’t significantly help Miller’s numbers. Math and sports! My favorite.

    Miller and Halak are a wash (outside of maybe health) and I have no idea what Ott does better than Stewart, if anything.

    I’ll have to do some more research on Blues prospects, but I still don’t see a top line. They basically have two second lines and two third lines.

  26. Phil says:

    Blues are already a good team. They gave away ome future for right now. Will Miller and Ott help? Are the Blues better with Ott than Stewart, Miller vs Halak? Stewart had underperformed vs expectations of the organIzation. Ott with the Blues will either regress into a bigger dick than he has been, or play disciplined with an edge to help them. Blues are/have been prone to undisciplined, selfish play which has cost them. Ott may backfire completely with the Blue notes. One dumbass penalty in playoffs can upset the applecart. I think the Blues are going in the direction that Ott will help them beat hell out of the Hawks and get em to the finals. When all is said and done the Hawks win because of how they play with speed, puck possession, and strong team D. Blues trying to follow that, but top to bottom do not have the same skill set the Hawks do IMO. They are better though than they were a year ago. I believe the Blues right now are better than Ducks or Kings. It is going to come down to luck with injuries/or lack of in the end to the core group for each team.

    I don’t see Miller as a show stopper addition to the Blues. Halak was very good 2 years ago, not so great last year. This year decent numbers, but not a top 10 keeper in the NHL. Miller is for me a better goalie right now. Bottom line is teams that play good D count on their keepers to just keep em in the game. Not sure how Miller ups the ante that much.

    Hawks carry the advantage over St Louis of knowing how to win big games. Detroit had this unfortunately for many years. Really competitive teams have that mentality. Now the Hawks have this very important intangible. Hawks have as good or better personnel than any team in the NHL. Playoffs are going to be great this year. All I know is as much as I always want the Hawks to win, I want for sick pleasure to see team like the Blues, Nucks to lose.

    It isn’t in my DNA to ever root for the Blues. Screw em. They can’t even sell their joint out for big games!

    Lets get back on track this evening and

    LETS GO HAWKS!

  27. morrison says:

    NAS, PHI, PIT, and now STL traded away their future to be better short term.

    The Beauty of the Bowmans… longterm, longterm, longterm.
    Where have I heard this before… location, location, location.

  28. Dickie Dunn says:

    The Hawks made a move – traded Brad Winchester to Minnesota for Brian Connelly.

  29. MS says:

    The Blues goalies have looked very shaky the past month and Halak was weak at the Olympics so I believe their hand was forced on this move. After the disappointments of getting beat by the Kings the last two years they need to show their fans they are a team that can go deep in the playoffs. The challenge for the Blues will be to see if Steen steps up as a premier scorer in the playoffs which has been missing. They are a very deep team but now have a lot of pressure for results. I also think their very physical style is difficult to maintain through four rounds of the playoffs without players getting hurt. It seems like adding Ott is only doubling-down on this style.

    Regarding Bickell, seriously there is no way he gets traded. First no one would take the contract and second this is not how the Hawks operate (reward a loyal guy only to dump him). I think he had the great fortune to have a career playoffs as his contract expired. Good for him but we are now expecting the guy from the playoffs when he never performed at that level previously. He is a stand-up guy and I think he is burdened by the contract and trying to live up to the expectations. Hopefully he can settle in to some success on the 3rd line. It would be nice if Q let 29-65-20 play several games together to see if they could show what they could do together.

  30. Joey Zamboni says:

    Tj – “Dickenson” Dunn

    How do you know it’s not “Richard”……..????? ;^)

  31. Rufus T. Firefly says:

    Ott on St Louis was done in part to deal with Toews and the Hawks should we meet in the playoffs. Ott can be ferocious in his two way game and his specific addition to that forward mix in St Louis scares the living piss out of me.

    Miller will be on a mission too. He is a distinctly better goalie than Halak. Now he gets to play with a grea defense, a great collection of two way forwards and the Hitchcock system. He just stepped into an unbelievably great situation. And St Loius is motivated to get over the playoff choke hump too.

  32. wall says:

    Rufus- we are agreeing too much today… I don’t think Miller is better than Halak…
    But he is bigger… and the Blues system is better than Buff… this will most likely lead to him playing very well – he just has to be square/Positional goalie (like Emery for Hawks last year)- and Miller will end up with great numbers.

  33. Travis says:

    JS said it best – math and sports should make babies, and this is a mostly lateral move at the cost of draft picks.

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