DENVER (CBS4) – Colorado Avalanche analyst Peter McNab doesn’t think the team will get a long-term deal done with center Ryan O’Reilly, who currently isn’t under contract, and calls the situation “unpleasant.”
“I think it’s been unpleasant for both sides, I really do,” McNab told CBS4’s Vic Lombardi on Xfinity Monday Live! “Let’s not forget that the last time this happened and Ryan O’Reilly signed the offer sheet … it didn’t sit well.”
McNab said it was interesting watching Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations Joe Sakic and head coach Patrick Roy talk about the O’Reilly situation, which is likely heading towards arbitration, resulting in a short-term deal.
“Joe understands completely, this is the business side of the game. I think O’Reilly understands that this is the business side of the game,” McNab said. “The nice thing is you get a person like Patrick Roy who understands that when this player eventually does show up with the Avalanche … he said, ‘I don’t care … he’s a player, and that’s it.’ There’s no animosity on that side of it.”
McNab said situations like what’s going on with O’Reilly are the least enjoyable part of the game to him.
“Because to everybody it’s lottery money – it’s a gigantic amount of money, but it’s their lottery money, it’s their life, it’s their time to make it,” he said. “I guess one of the problems is with the hard salary cap, it just becomes more restrictive.”
He said before the salary cap when the Avs had a great rivalry with Detroit it was easy to add great players.
“Now you couldn’t do it because of the salary cap and the restraints … so the money is a different issue than it was when the Avalanche came to town, and you just hope that it gets done and it gets done quickly, because there’s no question the Avalanche want him and Ryan wants to be here.
“I think the Avalanche are going to do everything in their power to get it done,” McNab said, referring to just getting O’Reilly back on the team.
– By Matthew J. Buettner, CBSDenver.com
Watch more of the video with Peter McNab in the Xfinity Monday Live! section.