New York Rangers: Why J.T. Miller is so important
Jan 22, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Rangers left wing J.T. Miller (10) celebrates his game winning goal in overtime against the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. New York won 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

New York Rangers’ star forward J.T. Miller has proven his worth undoubtedly his career. However, this season just seems so much different.

For the New York Rangers, this season has seen unbelievable goal scoring, horrible defense and a struggling King in goal.

This is not what the Blueshirts had in mind for a bounce back to last year’s horrid first round exit against Pittsburgh.

While things have been going north and south for the team for a while now, there is one thing that has remained consistent.

J.T. Miller has been outstanding every game, and there is no way one could doubt this.

For starters, look at his stats.

49 games into the season, Miller has produced 16 goals and 35 points. Three of the goals have been shorthanded, but the Rangers PK is very good at scoring goals as well.

There is something about the way Miller plays that just makes the players around him better.

Michael Grabner and Matt Puempel are on Miller’s wings and are both doing their share of contribution.

Look at this goal that Miller had scored against the Maple Leafs:

Granted, the goal was a deflection off of Hunwick’s bucket, but it was still a good goal.

The entire play was good from start to finish.

It starts with a good defensive play by Miller and he takes it into the neutral zone.

After skating through center ice he goes wide and attempts to center a pass to forward Brandon Pirri. It doesn’t work, but Kevin Hayes is there and picks it up. Miller stays wide and Hayes notices this and is able to hit Miller with a good pass.

Without a second thought, Miller fires off a one-timer and it goes in off the deflection.

It is that kind of thought process that makes No. 10 such a good player, and a vital one to this Rangers team.

He currently sits third on the team in points, with 35. Also in the top 10 is his linemate Michael Grabner, who is number six.

Miller has finally grown into the hockey player who the Rangers hoped he would become when they drafted him.

He has sure come a long way from wearing No. 47 and getting his first taste of NHL experience under John Tortorella. After all this time, it is good to see how he has developed and turned his game around.

Year after year he can produce offensively, and with Alain Vigneault coaching, only benefits the team. With the season he is currently having, Miller has solidified himself as a major component to what the New York Rangers are.

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