BOSTON -- Ryan Miller wanted to make one thing clear after Buffalo's 6-2 loss to Boston.
"I just stuck around because I just want to say what a piece of expletive I think Milan Lucic is."
Strong words. But Miller thinks he's entitled.
With the Sabres up 1-0 and less than seven minutes left in the first period, Lucic got a breakaway and skated for the Buffalo net. Miller came out of his crease to challenge the Bruins winger and managed to poke the puck away. Lucic didn't hesitate; he knew the goalie could be hit and delivered a monster blow that knocked Miller on his butt and the helmet off his head. The netminder swiped angrily at Lucic's knees from where he sat on the ice and a scrum ensued, but the officials eventually killed the action with a charging penalty on Lucic.
Miller's outrage was not sated by the whistle.
"Fifty pounds on me, and he runs at me like that. It's unbelievble," he said in the visitor's locker room. "Everyone in this city sees him as big, tough, solid player. I respected him for how hard he played. That was gutless. Gutless, piece of expletive."
Things didn't get better for the Sabres after Boston's penalty. Though the Bruins didn't appear to gain momentum immediately after the collision, Buffalo didn't either. The Sabres couldn't add to their lead and Boston opened things up in the second period, ripping Miller with three unanswered goals.
He was pulled before the third period.
All Miller could do -- from the sounds of his single soundbite -- was sit and stew. And there's plenty to think about. The Sabres netminder, the 2010 Vezina Trophy winner, has been mired in a slump, with five losses now in his last six games. Did the numbers fan the fire of his postgame response?
Maybe. But it won't change them.