Covering tonight’s Colorado Avalanche tilt in Florida, the Denver Post’s Adrian Dater (@adater) tweeted out a Sulia link (note: don’t ask, Sulia is stupid) to point out number and affiliation of scouts who are in attendance to watch the game.
“Chicago Blackhawks (four, including GM Stan Bowman), Columbus Blue Jackets (two), New York Rangers, Winnipeg Jets, Pittsburgh Penguins (two), Ottawa Senators (three) and Los Angeles Kings.
There was a NHL meeting in Florida the other day, so that probably explains something like the Hawks having four people here.”
It is worth mentioning that O’Reilly cannot be traded until late in February because that will mark the one-year anniversary in which he signed a free agent offer sheet with the Calgary Flames and had it matched by the Avalanche. In matching the offer sheet, the league CBA prevents Colorado from trading O’Reilly for one calendar year.
O’Reilly is obviously a highly coveted player. He has that unique blend of talent, hustle and brawn that appeals to a wide variety of fans. With that being said, he’s also due for a new contract at the conclusion of the season and in signing an expensive offer sheet with Calgary, to qualify him as an RFA, an NHL team will have to send him a qualifying offer of $6.5 million. Mind you, a team could always negotiate a contract that pays him less.
However, odds are we are getting ahead of ourselves here. As Bruce Garrioch wrote about for the Ottawa Sun, the Senators just concluded their own scouting meetings in Fort Lauderdale this week in which they created their lists for the NHL Draft and the NHL trade deadline.
So yeah, maybe there’s some interest in a player or players there, but it’s probably just an opportunity or convenience thing more than anything.