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Getting to know a Ranger: J.T. Miller

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Part of a mini-series highlighting some Rangers players to give a little insight on what the Penguins will face coming up in their series with New York.

Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Name: J.T. Miller

Height: 6'1"

Weight: 200 lbs

Born: March 4th, 1993 (22 years old)

Drafted: NYR 1st Round 2011, 11th Overall

2014-15 stat line: 58 games played, 10 goals, 13 assists, 23 penalty minutes

2013-14 playoff stat line: 4 GP, 0G, 2A, 2 PIMs

2014-15 stats vs Penguins: 2 GP, 1G, 0A, 0 PIMs

2014-15 5v5 Advanced Stats: 50.7 CF%, +1.6% Corsi Relative, 101.4 PDO

Player detail (via The Hockey News Player Page)

JT Miller THN

2014-15 New York Rangers player usage, via War on Ice

rangers forwards bubbles

HERO Chart (via Domenic Galamini):

miller15nyr

Per these metrics, he's being placed in a role a little bit above what his production has been, but considered how deep and skilled the Rangers lineup is, they can get away with it more than other teams might be able to.

Analysis: Miller has stepped up well and has been able to stay on one of the Rangers top lines for the time being. He comes in with a GF% of 56.36, having been on-ice for 31 Rangers goals at 5v5 and 24 goals against, while averaging 12 minutes 5v5 TOI per game. He may not stand out as a superstar player, but when combined with guys like Stepan and Kreider, they all can be dangerous.

Most common linemates: As of lately, Miller has been deployed on the Rangers top line with Chris Kreider and Derek Stepan. Three really good skaters, all with good hands. Stepan is an all-around good talent, and his wingers combine a combination of power forward from Kreider with the finesse of J.T. Miller. Tough line to contend with. With guys who can skate so well and fly on the ice, gap control is everything. If Christian Ehrhoff ends up being able to play, you're looking at a situation where you might have an Ehrhoff/ Ben Lovejoy or Ehrhoff/Ian Cole pairing facing this line for the Rangers.

Why you should know who he is: As ROOT Sports and Paul Steigerwald will be sure to tell us 1000 times over the next two weeks or so, J.T. Miller was born in the Pittsburgh area (East Palestine, OH). This will surely be drilled into our heads. Miller is a very talented young player that is mainly needed due to his low cap hit, only $925,000, in the final year of his his entry level contract. He's quick and has good hands. The best thing about Miller is this he is a good American boy.

How the Pens can stop him: Gap control all day. That's so important with a line full of fast and skilled players. We've seen Kreider able to break past the defense in alone on Fleury, so keeping Miller and Stepan from being able to spring their lineman on a breakaway is vastly important. Limiting time and space is so key.