Niitimaki or Miller

Discussion in 'NHL Draft - Prospects' started by DaveMatthew, Sep 28, 2005.

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  1. DaveMatthew

    DaveMatthew Registered User

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    Who will have more success (wins, shutouts, GAA, SV%, etc) in the next 4 years. Ryan Miller of the Sabres or Antero Niitimaki?
     
  2. Dario Cueto

    Dario Cueto KIND OF A BIG DEAL

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    It's a toss up.

    I'd say Miller in the long run, but this year Nitty.
     
  3. Did you forget what team Miller's playing for?

    I'd go with Nitty.
     
  4. Brad*

    Brad* Guest

    If that's the criteria, I would have to go with Niittymaki. Hitchcock's Flyers would be a nice team to play goal for.
     
  5. earthstar

    earthstar Registered User

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    Buffalo's not as bad as a lot of people think, and are going to surprise a lot of teams this year. They've also got a pretty good base of youngsters - Miller included - and are poised to be a force in the near future. Nothing against Niitimaki, he's good, but barring a trade,he's going to be number 2 to Esche, Miller will be number 1 in Buffalo soon enough and over the course of four years will put up better numbers.
     
  6. Brad*

    Brad* Guest

    Not necessarily true. Esche will start as the starter this season, but it is not set in stone that he will remain as such throughout the season. Beyond this season, Niittymaki is the Flyers' goaltender of the future, and they are very high on him. Esche will have to fight Niittymaki this season to keep his starting job, let alone in the future, where it will become much more difficult. Niittymaki is obviously more talented then Esche, it is only a matter of time before he passes him.
     
  7. Dario Cueto

    Dario Cueto KIND OF A BIG DEAL

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    I didn't think the difference between the two was that big, I always thought of Esche as pretty solid compared to some of the guys the Flyers have had in the past couple of years (Burke, Cechmanek, Hackett, etc.).
     
  8. Brad*

    Brad* Guest

    First off, your avatar is disturbing. Yet arousing.

    Secondly, you're right, compared to those guys, he's a step up. Esche is probably a middle of the pack or slightly higher goaltender in the NHL. He makes the saves he has to, has a good attitude and works hard, and is again, "solid," mechanically. The thing is, middle of the pack is about as high as I see him going. Watching Esche now for two seasons and from he's done before, it just doesn't appear if he has the natural talent to really be much higher than what he is. Is it good enough to win the Cup? With this Flyers team, I believe so, but that's not the discussion.

    The difference between Niittymaki and Esche is upside. Niittymaki has a lot of natural talent. From watching quite a few of his AHL games in person, you can see that he has a very strong game all the way around and has very few weaknesses. I believe, as do the Flyers (from what I can tell) that he has the potential to become a very good number one goaltender in the NHL, and consequently better than Esche. Actually, I doubt there is much of a difference now, as Esche is only two years older and Niittymaki has two three years of NA Pro hockey experience. However, he has only three games of NHL experience, which is really what's keeping him from taking over the job. Put it this way, if Esche and Niittymaki had the same number of NHL games under their belts, Niittymaki would be starting.

    Antero has kind of flown under the radar here at HF, for whatever reason. His last two seasons in the AHL opened some eyes, but I don't think he's gotten the recognition that his level of skill deserves. That's fine, as Flyers' fans have been really excited about him for a while now. Of all the goalies I've personally seen come through the Flyers' system (Ouellet, Boucher, Pelletier, etc), Niittymaker looks like the best to me. Esche is a solid goalie who had a real strong year last season, but Niittymaki's potential upside is clearly higher, thus I think it's only a matter of time.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 28, 2005
  9. blah

    blah Registered User

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    Esche is very solid, but Niity has the franchise goalie potential Esche doesn't.
     
  10. Agreed, and he's not only unnoticed here at HF ... I love watching the guy play.

    I was able to grab him in a keeper fantasy league earlier this year, off the undrafted players list. Put him in the minors, with Fleury ...
     
  11. MLH

    MLH Registered User

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    Miller will start in Buffalo.
     
  12. Brad*

    Brad* Guest

    As do I. I enjoyed seeing him put on a display a few times in shootouts last season, he can really move. If he were just a bit taller, he'd have all the tools.

    If Esche goes the whole season as the number one, Niittymaki should still get about 30 games. I think they'll go about even until after the Olympic Break, and then decide on the go to guy.
     
  13. blah

    blah Registered User

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    That's how I see it. Hitch will ride whoever is hot into the playoffs.
     
  14. ProctorSilex

    ProctorSilex Guest

    Nittimaki.

    Because he's in my hockey pool and I always some how win. :dunno:
     
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