On an expiring contract on a team that is slipping further and further from the playoff picture, there has been plenty of talk that the St. Louis Blues may make Ryan O’Reilly available ahead of the trade deadline.
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You can certainly understand why general manager Doug Armstrong would be considering moving on from his teams captain, given that he would likely garner a significant return from any team interested. In this particular situation, the team can do whatever it is they want, as O’Reilly does not have a no-trade clause in his contract. That said, if it were up to him, he would remain with the Blues, not only for this season but moving forward.
“This is where I want to be. I hope I don’t get moved, but I think things will probably progress, especially with the deadline coming up and the talks with that,” O’Reilly said. “We’ll see how it goes. We’re starting to get into that.”
The veteran forward went as far as to say he would be open to taking a discount in order to remain with the Blues. That would certainly make things more likely in regards to a potential extension, as Armstrong doesn’t have a ton of cap space to work with.
“Yeah, absolutely,” O’Reilly said in regards to potentially taking a discount to remain a Blue. “Yeah, I want to make it work, but I also want to hold my value, too. At the end of the day, it is a business, and if we can’t succeed, and you can’t do the job as a leader, then I could (see) them getting rid of me.”
What could make things difficult here is what O’Reilly sees his value at, versus what the team sees. There is no doubt he still holds plenty of value, but many are questioning whether he is caught up in a bad season or perhaps in a decline. In 37 games this season, the 31-year-old has put up a disappointing 10 goals and 16 points.
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