One of the more intriguing restricted free agent stories of this off-season comes to an end and it did so without the use of arbitration, where the hearing was to go today.
Ryan O'Reilly has re-signed with the Colorado Avalanche, receiving a new 2-year deal, worth $12 million, which will give him a $6 million cap hit for each of the two seasons. It works out to be a $1 million raise on his last cap hit for the 2014 season.
O'Reilly was a key feature of an Avalanche offense that was quite potent through the 2014 season. In 80 games, O'Reilly scored 24 goals and 64 points, while only taking two minutes in penalties, earning him the Lady Byng Award for the year.
The 23-year old forward is one of six Avalanche players going into the 2015 season that finished in the top 100 of pool scoring last season. Colorado should be an interesting team to watch, despite losing Paul Stastny to free agency, but gaining Jarome Iginla in the process. Projections for the Avalanche should be positive going into this season and this team could be a contender when it is all said and done.
The addition of O'Reilly to the projected roster was not a cheap one, which now leaves the Avalanche with about $6.7 million left against the ceiling with three spots left to fill. The team will likely still add at least another forward and defenseman and with the depth they have in the system, they could be relatively priced additions.