Ryan Miller is a hockey goalie. He exists on a different plane than spectators and fans.
"People wanted to make it such a huge game; it’s just another hockey game against some great players.” This was Ryan Miller’s response to Joe Micheletti’s question of “Do you even consider at this point the bigger picture of what this did for hockey and YOU being a part of it?” Miller knows that this was NOT just another game. It was a landmark game, a decisive battle in hockey history. As Petr Forsberg scored on Corey Hirsch in 1994 to give Sweden the Gold over Canada, Sid The Kid went 5-hole on Miller, to bring Olympic glory to Canada. In 1994 we all felt bad for Canada, but history still shows them as the losers. Despite NBC’s best efforts to glorify the effort of the US team, they are forever locked into history as losers of the 2010 Gold Medal game.
As important as this game was, in some ways,(as Miller said) it was just a game. Ryan Miller wants to win. He’s an athlete. He happens to be from Michigan and represent The United States. Next week he will play for the Buffalo Sabres. He will still be an athlete and he will still want to win every game he starts.
The media needs a story to justify its existence. Just as I am taking an angle in this very article, NBC needs drama to enhance their appeal and ratings. To Ryan Miller, it’s his passion. He was on the losing team today. At least for now, he cannot be happy with simply being a part of a heart-warming underdog story.
During the interview, Miller alternated from what his emotions told him to say & what was appropriate for camera. This isn’t his first interview, he knows that he represents America & it’s not the time to be 100% honest. Had he been truthful, I believe he would have told Joe Micheletti that most of his questions were garbage. Micheletti forced the pre-written script and Miller was trapped into cooperating. It was apparent that he was upset with the loss. What could also be seen was his displeasure with being cast as the lovable loser.
In a nod to his teammates, Miller said, “We gained a lot of respect, our guys came here as an afterthought to a lot of people…” The US team did gain respect as the team went 5-1 and was the only team in the tournament to beat Canada. He recognizes this as the accomplishment that it is. It’s an accomplishment of respect, where 2 weeks ago, there was very little.
The 1980 team won the gold & the 2010 Team did not. Miller’s place in US hockey history is 1 step below perfection and he refuses to accept this as a moral victory. The truth is more harsh than NBC can handle. Ryan Miller feels terrible. His team lost, and no amount of sugar-coating can change that.
I love having a team leader in Miller who is not happy with 2nd Place.
Now Let’s Go Sabres!