Hopes were raised Tuesday night among Avalanche fans about the Ryan O'Reilly contract standoff with the team, when it was reported by your humble correspondent that talks still were ongoing after a period of inactivity. Could a resolution finally be at hand?
Sorry, but it doesn't look like it from what I'm hearing. Neither side appears willing to budge.
The Avs' contract offers to their leading scorer from last season remain two years at $7 million or five years at about $17 million. While the differences on a two-year deal are much closer than a five-year deal (O'Reilly wants in the neighborhood of $25 million on that one), the Avs appear to have drawn a line in the sand with their offers.
With no softening of the O'Reilly camp's stance, that would seem to leave only two possibilities: a trade or an offer sheet from another team.
One of the underreported aspects of this standoff is the growing possibility that another team could make O'Reilly a Group II free-agent offer sheet. There are many teams interested in making a deal for O'Reilly, but it's unclear whether the Avs are considering moving him.
If they're not — but another team really wants him — they are free to offer O'Reilly any contract they want. Then the Avs would have their hand forced; either they would have to match the offer or let him go and accept draft picks as compensation.
How many draft picks and in which rounds are dependent on what the average salary is with the new offer. For example, if O'Reilly's new average salary were from $3,364,392 to $5,046,585, the Avs would receive a first- and a third-round pick from that team, should they not match the offer. If it were from $5,046,586 to $6,728,781, the Avs would get first-, second- and third-round picks in the next draft. Offers that are $6.7 million and higher would involve at least two first-round picks, and O'Reilly probably wouldn't get anything that high.
Read more: Ryan O'Reilly saga could see offer sheet come from Avalanche rival - The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/avalanche/ci_22536743/ryan-oreilly-saga-could-see-offer-sheet-come#ixzz2KDpy0zkr
Ryan O'Reilly saga could see offer sheet come from Avalanche rival
Denver Post | Feb 7