In case you missed it the Buffalo Sabres finally parted ways with center Ryan O’Reilly on Sunday night, shipping him to the St. Louis Blues in exchange for Patrik Berglund, Vladimir Sobotka, Tage Thompson and draft picks.
TRADE: We’ve acquired forwards Tage Thompson, Patrik Berglund and Vladimir Sobotka, a 1st-round pick in 2019, and a 2nd-round pick in 2021 in exchange for Ryan O’Reilly.
O’Reilly’s name had surfaced in trade reports in the days leading up to his eventual trade, but it was reported that Sabres general manager Jason Botterill’s asking price was too high to facilitate a deal. Well… eventually Blues GM Doug Armstrong was the one who finally blinked, adding additional assets to his offer for O’Reilly and finally consummating the deal.
Just two days later O’Reilly is finally opening up about the trade and reflecting on his time with the Sabres… and it’s not pretty. After all, the Sabres were one of the league’s worst teams during O’Reilly’s three seasons with the team, despite O’Reilly’s strong play.
Check out what the 27 year old center had to say to the Blues media during his introductory press conference call yesterday afternoon:
“I feel like I have a spark in me now. There’s something different. It’s interesting how it happened, but I’m happy, I’m excited and I don’t regret anything that’s happened.”
O’Reilly would go on to express some regret for how things went during his time with the Sabres.
“My first year in Buffalo, I was really trying to feel things out, and being kind of young at that time, getting that contract, I don’t think I kind of got a hold of the situation as best I could have. I don’t think I was ready for that situation as best as possible. But I think going to St. Louis with all the kinds of things in play, the veterans that they have there, that it’s something that’s easier to kind of jump into.”
Ultimately, O’Reilly’s looking most forward to putting all the drama behind him and helping the Blues get back into the playoff picture.
“There’s nothing like playoff hockey. It’s what we all kind of dream of doing. Unfortunately, my career, I haven’t done it enough. And I plan to come in and help this team get there, help this team win.”
Photo Credit: Zuma Press