Avalanche Sakic and Roy Presser: What Does it Mean?

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Ryan O’Reilly Contract

Back in April GM Joe Sakic talked about the Colorado Avalanche’s intentions for Ryan O’Reilly:

"“We like Ryan a lot; he’s very valuable, he’s one of our core guys. He doesn’t need it, we don’t need it, no one needs the distractions of him going through the season [as a pending unrestricted free agent], so we’re going to try to get [an extension] done.”"

Sakic said in today’s press conference that the team is in negotiations with Ryan O’Reilly’s agent. However, his latest on the situation is “I’d like to have him signed by the start of the season, hopefully.” The team is apparently focusing more on the upcoming draft.

What does it mean?

Never play poker with Joe Sakic. He has a poker face that would make The Gambler tremble. He wants to keep his options 100% open. He and Avs management — including Patrick Roy who, as VP of player personnel has final say on roster decisions — want to keep Ryan OReilly in the lineup, but they’re not going to keep him as a pending unrestricted free agent.

The Avs say they are putting that on the back burner until after the draft. I can guarantee they are not only listening to interesting offers, they are keeping O’Reilly’s agent on speed dial.

Sakic admitted the team knows where O’Reilly’s camp is — read: he wants mo’ money. (My hope is that they don’t cave in — what’s right is right, what’s fair is fair, and O’Reilly shouldn’t be paid more than better, more valuable players.) He probably already has a good idea if the team is going to be able to “get it done.” If it hasn’t happened yet… it probably means he’s hoping to sweeten the pot by promoting O’Reilly’s value.