Well, it didn’t take long for J.T. Miller to make an impression.
The Rangers’ 2011 first-round pick made his NHL debut last night in a 3-1 loss to the Devils in Newark, and by the end of the game was being sent out on the ice more than half of the forwards on the team.
“Personally, after the way I played in the end, it wouldn’t make sense for me not to be here,” Miller told The Post, before quickly recanting on what might have been a slip of the tongue. “I don’t know how to put it. I think I can skate here, is what I mean. I just have to make sure I stay consistent if they give me the opportunity.”
Miller finished with two shots and a plus-1 rating in 14:25 of ice time. The 6-foot-1, 200-pound forward played most of the third period on a line with Brad Richards and Chris Kreider, and even got 4:35 of power-play time.:35 of power-play time.
“I thought I got acclimated pretty well,” Miller said. “I thought I played pretty well. I was finishing my checks, trying to make plays when I can and I stuck to that.”
Miller, 19, was a standout for the gold-medal-winning U.S. team during the World Junior Championships in early January, and played 37 games for the Connecticut Whale (AHL) before being called up Monday afternoon.
Because of his age, he can play five games for the Rangers without the first year of his entry-level contract being burned on this 48-game season.
* Defenseman Dan Girardi missed the game with a lower-body injury, the team saying he is “banged up.”
Girardi was leading the team averaging 24:54 of ice time per game. On Monday, Girardi didn’t practice for what Tortorella called a “maintenance day.”
He took part in yesterday’s morning skate, and said he felt fine. Girardi, 28, had missed only two games in his career.
Rangers' Miller makes his mark in debut
New York Post | Feb 6