Rangers Report Cards: K’Andre Miller: B (B)
Miller skated his way through his entry-level contract, showing the world he’s worth more than a stack of puck-shaped pancakes.
The NHL’s salary cap played the party pooper, forcing him into a two-year bridge deal that’s not precisely splurging territory – a cool $7.744 million.
Miller’s a rising star among defensemen, no doubt about it. The 23-year-old from St. Paul, Minnesota, racked up 43 points, and guess what? He pulled off a whopping 38 in 2022-23 when the teams played straight-up, even 5-on-5 hockey.
His defensive point share hit 4.7 like he’s some hockey wizard casting spells on the ice. And guess the only Ranger he trailed? No other than Fox, his teammate and probably his mentor in hockey sorcery.
Miller dished out a career-high 162 hits and blocked a career-high 105 shots. Yet some folks were grumbling about his “defense.” It makes sense, as he had a career-high 68 giveaways. However, let’s remember this guy’s still growing.
Miller had a hiccup at the end of the season, like when you’re skating along and hitting a rogue puck. And sure, his five-point February and the playoffs where he had one assist weren’t his finest hour either.
However, we need to consider those external factors. The Rangers’ zone exit strategy under head coach Gerard Gallant was as elusive as a puck in a snowstorm. There was only a little instruction unless you count the order of dump and chase. Maybe their strategy was to give the opponents a sudden puck fright?
Miller will begin the season on the second pair despite being the team’s best-left defenseman, even better than Lindgren. However, the card considers the entire season, so Miller doesn’t receive an A grade.