Sunday is the moment we have all been waiting for: Team USA is going for the gold against Canada. It's been a pretty crazy ride and I've been loving every second of it. I couldn't be more proud of Ryan Miller and the rest of Team USA, it's been such a joy to watch them get to this point. I especially loved watching them play against the Finns. Despite the fact that they were up 6-0, they were still battling and diving to block shots and make key defensive plays as if it was a 1-0 game. I've been loving their work ethic. Sunday is going to be absolutely crazy and regardless if they bring home gold or silver I have been so proud that these group of guys are representing the United States.
It's also been really funny seeing Ryan Miller getting thrust into a huge spotlight. We've seen it happen to him in Buffalo, and now he has to embrace a much larger spotlight. Personally I am getting a kick out of all this attention he is getting. Getting interviewed by Ryan Seacrest, appearing in tabloids, it's just really funny to me because he is the last guy you would expect to see getting this kind of attention. It's funny for Buffalonians because he's been a celebrity here for a while now, but now that the whole world is watching him, more people want a piece of him and a peek into his private life. It's kind of feel like some fans want to be like, "Hey, world! Back off...we had him first!"
I think he's handling it very well, which shouldn't surprise anyone because he has always been such a class act. Here is a great article by Puck Daddy discussing how Ryan is handling all the attention. I think he appreciates his privacy and never wanted to live the "Hollywood life", but he is acknowledging the attention that the Olympics is bringing him and he's doing it gracefully. I'm glad to see a person like Ryan Miller being such a huge representation of hockey right now. He's modest, hardworking, professional, and smart. The fact that he is American could also go a long way for recruiting new fans in the US. I've already talked to several of my friends from all around who haven't watched hockey before that are now completely captivated. It's funny seeing them update their Facebook status cheering on Ryan Miller and Team USA. I've read on a few message boards where people have said that they have "converted" into a hockey fan...it's awesome.
I think some people might be worried that all this media attention might make Ryan lose focus, but I really don't think that's the case. Buffalonians should know that he's better than that. Right now, he's one of the more talked about athletes in the Olympics, so different media outlets like Ryan Seacrest and Hollywood tabloids are going to want to talk to him, and believe it or not...they may not always be interested in the hockey part of his life. They might want to talk about his romantic life...but exposure is exposure and that kind of media attention won't last. A few weeks after the Olympics have wrapped up, I don't think we'll have to worry about paparazzi chasing him into Wegmans or him grazing the coveres of tabloids exploiting his romantic life. All this national attention may be short lived, so I think we should enjoy the fact that the rest of the world is getting a chance to appreciate Ryan Miller too.
So while his personal life may not always be a topic of discussion on Ryan Seacrest's talk show, all this national attention may open some people's eyes to hockey and maybe we'll get a few more fans out of it.
And as funny as it was to hear Ryan get interviewed by Ryan Seacrest, I think it's pretty funny that an impersonator claiming to be Ryan Miller prank called MSNBC and they aired the interview. Have to say that's pretty damn funny... Here is a video of MSNBC's Willie Geist interviewing the imposter, and then he later apologizes on-air and he interviews the real Ryan Miller, who seemed to be a good sport about MSNBC's gaffe. I wonder what they said to Ryan when he called in to be interviewed ("Okay, so you're the REAL Ryan Miller, right? Right...?).
It's been so great to see Ryan finally compete in the Olympics and I can't imagine how exciting it must be for him... I'm so happy for our little Olympian! Throughout this crazy ride and national attention he's getting, he's remained his classy, humble, professional self. Sunday is going to be one of the biggest games of his life and I can't wait to see how it all shakes out.
U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!