The Buffalo Sabres traded Ryan Miller (as well as captain Steve Ott) to the St. Louis Blues last night and the move left them a little light in the backup goaltending department. Meet Ryan Vinz: former Sabres video scout, current director of hockey technology at a company in Buffalo, and never, at any competitive level outside maybe high school, goalie.
Just an hour before the game against San Jose, Buffalo traded Miller and Ott to the Blues in return for Jaroslav Halak, Chris Stewart, a prospect, and draft picks. The NHL requires that all teams dress a backup goalie, so with Miller no longer a Sabre and Halak not yet with the team, Buffalo scrambled to fill the spot. With the clock ticking, he had to be local and he had to be available. This eventually led the team to Vinz, who at least had some experience with goaltending. He tried to walk on to his college team, but didn't make it. In 2003.
Although he never realized his aspirations of playing for Clarkson, trying out as a freshman walk-on in 2003, the former three-year starting goaltender at Lancaster, NY H.S. played an integral role in the Green and Gold's success. Vinz served as the program's video coordinator for four years from 2003 through the Knights' ECAC Hockey Championship campaign of last season.
The Sabres beat the Sharks 4-2 and Vinz got to dress for it and watch from the bench. That's not just a great night for a random dude living in Buffalo, that's a great night anywhere.
Photo via @CapCareyWDT
NHL team forced to use former video scout as its backup goalie [FOX]