Backing Up Miller

The backup goalie spot for the Buffalo Sabres is an interesting question for next season.  Barring injury, you can probably pencil Miller in for 65-70 starts again in the regular season, leaving 10-15 for whoever the backup is.  There are a few trains of thought out there as to who that should be.

  1. See if Jhonas Enroth is ready.  He’s progressed well at the AHL level (2.37 GAA, .919 SP last season), and could be a solid, inexpensive option for next year.  A bit more of a wild-card than an established vet, but more upside.
  2. Trade Enroth for a top-6 forward (center?) or D-man (if neither Hank nor Toni re-sign I imagine) and sign a vet backup.  I call this the Marty Biron, as that’s who most folks want back as the backup.  Probably costs a bit more than Enroth, but wouldn’t be a huge cap hit.
  3. Keep Enroth in the AHL and sign a vet backup.  Could still be Marty, Enroth would play more, but with Miller here long-term, it may be better to try and get something for Jhonas, especially with the number of teams that have goalie questions.

Stick-tap to TheFinnishLine on Twitter for the idea of trading Enroth, as I hadn’t thought of it.  The more I think about it, the more I like the idea.  Miller is our guy, and Enroth could net us (with a pick or a prospect or two) a new center to drop next to Vanek, or a top-4 defender to fill in for Hank or Toni if neither comes back.  I’d lean toward the forward myself, and give some of the Portland guys a try on the back line, but either way it wouldn’t bother me.  If they can’t make a trade, I think I’d want him here as the backup, and not with the Pirates.  I don’t think he’s going to get too much better there, and having a mentor like Ryan Miller could be good for him.

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