One of the biggest remaining names on the trade board heading into the deadline is no longer, as Ryan O’Reilly, along with Noel Acciari, were dealt to the Toronto Maple Leafs from the St. Louis Blues on Friday night.
Related: Can the Canadiens Trade the Players They Want to Move?
Both O’Reilly and Acciari are on expiring deals, so it was expected that each would be moved ahead of the deadline, though few had the Leafs as an option for either, let alone both. Heading the other way in the blockbuster deal are Adam Gaudette, prospect Mikhail Abramov, a 2023 first and third-round pick, as well as a second-round pick in 2024.
The Minnesota Wild were also a part of this deal, as they retained $3.75 million of O’Reilly’s deal in order for the Maple Leafs to be able to make room for him cap wise. As compensation, they have received the Leafs fourth-round pick in 2025.
On top of the Wild retaining $3.75 million, the Blues also retained the exact same amount, meaning that the Maple Leafs have him on the books for just $1.875 million. While he had to give up plenty in order to make it work, this has potential to be a great deal by Kyle Dubas, as O’Reilly is a playoff type player who could really help this Leafs team finally advance past the first-round and perhaps go on a run this Spring.
While the deal could prove to be a special one, it comes with some risks as well. After a down 2021-22 season by his standards, O’Reilly has really struggled in 2022-23 with only 12 goals and 19 points in 40 games. Whether it is simply a slump or a decline in play is anyone’s guess, but we may get a better idea in the coming months given that he will now be playing with a much better team.
The other player heading to the Leafs is Acciari. The 31-year-old doesn’t amount to much from the offensive side of things, but is a physical player who will provide the Leafs with some much needed sandpaper in the postseason. He should be a solid addition that Sheldon Keefe can count on in a fourth line role.
Next: Maple Leafs Consideration: Why Would Coyotes Trade Chychrun?
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