Tag: Colorado Avalanche

Ryan O'Reilly

Report: O’Reilly asked Avs for eight-year, $64 million


The Colorado Avalanche and Ryan O’Reilly have always had difficulty seeing eye-to-eye when it came to his monetary worth. It took O’Reilly signing an offer sheet, which Colorado matched, to end his hold out in the lockout shortened 2013 campaign. When it was time to renegotiate in the summer of 2014, the two sides only narrowly avoided arbitration by inking a two-year, $12 million deal.

With O’Reilly now just one season away from becoming an unrestricted free agent though, he reportedly demanded a massive eight-year, $64 million payday, according to the Denver Post. Instead, Colorado dealt him to Buffalo last night along with Jamie McGinn in exchange for Nikita Zadorov, Mikhail Grigorenko, J.T. Compher and the 31st overall selection.

If those numbers are accurate, then that’s identical to Phil Kessel’s contract, which the Maple Leafs forward is only one season into. Kessel has recorded at least 30 goals on five separate occasions and has reached the 80-point mark twice. O’Reilly, while admittedly more notable for his two-way game, has only reached the 20-goal or 60-point milestones on one occasion and that was back in 2013-14. He took a hit last season, finishing with 17 goals and 55 points in 82 contests.

On top of that, now that Kessel is on the open market, his contract might be a detriment to the point where Toronto is reportedly willing to take a contract back to sweeten the pot.

We’ll have to wait and see how O’Reilly’s negotiations with Buffalo goes. In the short-term, the Sabres wouldn’t have a problem inking him to that kind of a deal, but the term might hurt them later as their young up-and-coming stars develop and eventually start demanding big raises. To give one example, if Jack Eichel has the kind of career Buffalo’s hoping for, then his first deal following his entry-level contract could be huge, as was the case for Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Steven Stamkos before him.

That all being said, it’s possible that what O’Reilly wanted out of Colorado isn’t the same as what he wants from Buffalo. It could be that his history of having to battle the team for every new contract influenced what it would take for the Avalanche to keep him long-term. Either way, Buffalo is going into this with eyes wide open.

“You know going in when you make a trade like this that negotiations are going to be starting a high number,” Sabres GM Tim Murray told the Buffalo News. “We’re fully prepared for that.”

Sabres cash in their suffering, take Eichel second overall

Jack Eichel

SUNRISE — One of the worst seasons in NHL history paid off today for the Buffalo Sabres.

With the second overall pick in the 2015 draft, the Sabres selected forward Jack Eichel, the Boston University phenom that NHL Central Scouting ranked No. 2 among North American skaters. He was ranked behind only Connor McDavid, who went to the Oilers first overall.

Eichel enters the NHL with great expectations. He’s been called a franchise player, even garnering the “generational” label, along with McDavid.

The Sabres finished the 2014-15 season with a 23-51-8 record. Their 54 points were the fewest in the league, two fewer than Arizona managed. They had the worst offense, the worst power play, the worst penalty kill, and the second-worst goals-against average. They were accused of tanking. Often.

Now it’s time to start the ascension. With Eichel, Sam Reinhart, Evander Kane, Ryan O’Reilly, Zach Bogosian, Rasmus Ristolainen, and Robin Lehner, Sabres fans may not have to suffer much longer.

Related: Get to know a draft pick — Jack Eichel

Trade: Buffalo keeps dealing, acquires O’Reilly from Colorado

Nashville Predators v Colorado Avalanche

SUNRISE — The big trades haven’t stopped at the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, as the Colorado Avalanche have sent talented young center Ryan O’Reilly and forward Jamie McGinn to Buffalo.

In exchange, the Avalanche receive Nikita Zadorov, Mikhail Grigorenko, J.T. Compher and the 31st overall selection. The move reunites Grigorenko with Avs head coach Patrick Roy, who was his coach in the Quebec junior league, and gives Colorado a much-needed blueline prospect (Zadorov) and an intriguing youngster in Compher, who has impressed at the University of Michigan.

The key to the deal, though, is O’Reilly, one of the best young two-way centers in the league. He arrives in Buffalo after some acrimonious contract negotiations with the Avs, which included a contract holdout and signing an offer sheet with Calgary during the lockout-shortened ’13 campaign.

As a result of Colorado matching that offer sheet, O’Reilly’s heading into the last of a two-year, $12 million deal with a $6M average annual cap hit. There have been rumblings around him for the last few days, which intensified on Thursday when the Avs acquired the draft rights to center Carl Soderberg from Boston, then signed him to a five-year extension — believed by many as a move to replace O’Reilly down the middle.

Where O’Reilly fits in Buffalo remains to be seen.

He’s flipped between the middle and wing throughout his career, and could be headed back outside again with the likes of centers Jack Eichel and Sam Reinhart in the mix.

O’Reilly had 17 goals and 55 points in 82 games last year, down slightly from a banner ’13-14 campaign in which he posted career-highs in goals (28) and points (64).

This is the second significant deal of the day for Sabres GM Tim Murray. Earlier, he acquired goalie Robin Lehner and forward David Legwand from Ottawa in exchange for the 21st pick at the draft.

Though the O’Reilly trade is in the books, Murray’s work isn’t done. He’ll need to get to work on a contract extension, as O’Reilly needs a new deal at season’s end.

Report: Colorado, Soderberg agree to five-year, $23.75 million deal

Carl Soderberg

Carl Soderberg won’t be testing the unrestricted free agent market after all. Less than 24 hours after Colorado acquired the negotiating rights to Soderberg from the Boston Bruins in exchange for a 2016 sixth round pick, the Avalanche have locked him up to a five-year, $23.75 million contract, per ESPN’s Craig Custance.

The deal includes a full no-trade clause for the next two seasons and a limited one for the remainder of the deal, according to ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun.

Soderberg made the leap to North America after years of being one of Sweden’s top players and as a result the 29-year-old (30 in October) is only entering his third full NHL season. He had 13 goals and 44 points in 82 games while averaging 16:48 minutes per game in 2014-15. He also won just 48.2% of his faceoffs.

This signing will add fuel to the speculation that Ryan O’Reilly will ultimately be traded by Colorado. That’s especially true after a recent report suggested that Colorado felt like it had “no choice” but to move O’Reilly as he’s looking for a contract in the $60 million range.

The Avalanche don’t necessarily have to deal O’Reilly immediately though as he’s still signed for one more year with a $6 million cap hit and even after inking Soderberg, the Avalanche’s cap situation is healthy.

Trade: Avs acquire Soderberg from Bruins for sixth-round pick


The Colorado Avalanche have acquired Carl Soderberg from the Boston Bruins in exchange for a sixth round pick at the 2016 NHL Draft.

Colorado previously acquired the selection from Boston in the Max Talbot trade.

Soderberg is set to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1 with his three-year, $3.025 million deal is set to expire.

Boston had informed the 29-year-old that they intended to part ways with him earlier this month.

The trade now gives the Avs an exclusive window to negotiate with Soderberg before he hits the open market next Wednesday.

Soderberg scored 13 goals and 44 points in 82 games with the Bruins during the 2014-15 season.

He is reportedly seeking a deal worth $5 million per season.

Last week Avs’ GM Joe Sakic indicated he’d like to get Ryan O’Reilly signed to an extension.

However, today Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos reported that the O’Reilly camp is seaking a $60 million max contract. Kypreos added that the Avs now feel like they need to deal the forward.

Thursday’s acquisition of Soderberg could make O’Reilly expendable. The 24-year-old has one year remaining on his current deal with a cap hit of $6 million before becoming an unrestricted free agent next summer.

O’Reilly, who scored 17 goals and 55 points in 82 games during the 2014-15 season, has been the subject of trade rumors for several months.