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Ryan Miller headed to free agency after St. Louis Blues sign Brian Elliott

Ryan Miller and the St. Louis Blues vs. the Chicago Blackhawks. Goalie Ryan Miller's arrival couldn't stop the Blues from falling in the first round vs. Chicago. (David E. Klutho/SI)

By Allan Muir

The St. Louis Blues gambled once on Ryan Miller. It turns out that once was enough.

The Blues officially cut ties with their splashy trade deadline acquisition this morning with the announcement that they have signed Brian Elliott to a new three-year deal.

With top prospect Jake Allen on a one-way deal that guarantees him a spot on the roster next season, there's no room for the former Sabres great.

He'll now head to free agency on July 1.

The move doesn't come as a complete surprise. Miller was brought in specifically to get a contending Blues team over the playoff hunt. He couldn't get the job done, going 2-4 with a 2.70 GAA and a brutal .897 save percentage in a first-round loss to the Chicago Blackhawks. He was particularly soft in the Game 6 clincher, allowing four goals on 16 shots in the third period as the Blues dropped a 5-1 decision.

There were no contract talks between Miller and the Blues after that loss, and while he professed his admiration for the club and his teammates, he was probably just as ready to move on as they were.

The question now is, where does he go from here? His options are limited. He's long made it clear that he'd welcome a move to Southern California to make life easier for his wife, actress Noureen DeWulf. Problem is, the Kings are set with Jonathan Quick, and the Ducks appear comfortable moving forward with John Gibson and Frederik Andersen.

San Jose is a team looking to make some kind of significant change after blowing a 3-0 series lead in the first round, and since the Sharks are set up front and on defense, it makes sense that they might want to move on from Antti Niemi. Vancouver, Pittsburgh and Calgary may also be willing to talk with Miller.

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