Tag: Loui Eriksson

Nashville Predators v Colorado Avalanche

Avalanche’s biggest question: How much will they miss Ryan O’Reilly?


If the contract Ryan O’Reilly signed with the Buffalo Sabres is any indication, the Colorado Avalanche traded away a pretty good player this offseason.

O’Reilly’s stats are a pretty good indication, too. Still just 24 years old, he was the Avalanche’s third-leading scorer last season with 55 points in 82 games. On top of that, he killed penalties and won 53.4 percent of his faceoffs.

No wonder the Avs didn’t want to make this trade. They repeatedly stated their intention was to re-sign O’Reilly. Ultimately, however, his contract request included “numbers that we just didn’t go to,” according to GM Joe Sakic.

In return for O’Reilly, the Sabres sent the Avs defenseman Nikita Zadorov, forwards Mikhail Grigorenko and J.T. Compher, plus a draft pick. All three of those players are young, and it would be unreasonable to expect any of them to make a significant impact next season.

That’s why the Avs acquired Carl Soderberg from Boston and promptly signed him to a five-year pact worth almost $24 million. The plan is for the 29-year-old Soderberg to center Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog, just like O’Reilly did.

But whether Soderberg can play to O’Reilly’s level remains to be seen. Last year with the B’s, he had 44 points in 82 games, skating mostly with Loui Eriksson and Chris Kelly. With all due respect to those two veterans, MacKinnon and Landeskog represent an upgrade in linemates. Hence, Soderberg’s excitement at signing up for the opportunity.

It’s all the other stuff O’Reilly did, beyond putting up points, that Soderberg may not be able to replace.

Said Sabres GM Tim Murray upon giving O’Reilly that big contract extension: “It’s not easy to find a player who, at his age, is already established in the league as someone who plays a complete game and makes his teammates better. When we acquired him, we viewed him as someone who could immediately improve our roster, but was still young enough to make an impact for several years to come.”

Related: Mikhail Grigorenko is looking to make the leap

Report: Bruins trying to keep McQuaid

Boston Bruins v Tampa Bay Lightning

The Boston Bruins are apparently exploring ways to keep defenseman Adam McQuaid, a pending unrestricted free agent.

GM Don Sweeney hinted at it this morning, saying on a conference call that he’s had talks with teams that may allow the Bruins to re-sign one of their UFAs.

Now, according to Joe Haggerty, “multiple league sources have indicated to CSNNE.com that Adam McQuaid is the player Boston would like to re-sign.”

McQuaid would very much like to be back. The physical 28-year-old is coming off a challenging season, one in which the departure of Johnny Boychuk forced him into a bigger role with the B’s. But he’s also the kind of player that would seem to match Sweeney’s plans for the franchise to get back to its aggressive ways.

What’s uncertain is how Sweeney plans to make room for McQuaid. Loui Eriksson and Milan Lucic have both had their names floated in trade rumors. Chris Kelly’s $3 million cap hit stands out, but he’d be tough to move.

Related: ‘Highly unlikely’ Soderberg back in Boston

Video: Sabres end skid, top Bruins

Buffalo Sabres v Boston Bruins

Anders Lindback made a season-high 44 saves and Tyler Ennis scored the shootout winner as the Buffalo Sabres upset the Boston Bruins 2-1 Tuesday night.

The win snapped a seven-game winless skid for the Sabres and was Buffalo’s first win over Boston this season (1-1-2).

“I thought we had a lot of chances today to score more goals and win the game,” said Boston’s lone goal scorer Loui Eriksson per NHL.com. “But, yeah, we need to find ways to score those goals too. We create a lot of chances, but when we get that chance we have to really focus to put it in too. That cost us the game. I thought we were the much better team today, and we just need to get better on that.”

Rasmus Ristolainen had the Sabres’ lone goal in regulation.

Boston leads Ottawa by four points for the second wild card spot in the Eastern Conference and trails the Detroit Red Wings by four points for third spot in the Atlantic Division.

Tuukka Rask was a scratch due to “general soreness”. Claude Julien did not have an update on the goaltender post-game.

Niklas Svedberg made 23 saves in the loss.

The single point the Bruins picked up in the loss officially eliminated the Maple Leafs from playoff contention.