Final Grades 2014: Ryan O'Reilly, #90

Doug Pensinger

Shifting to Matt Duchene's wing sparked scoring that gave O'Reilly his best season yet.

Let's forget for a moment about contracts and celebrate the amazing season Ryan O`Reilly had with the Avalanche in 2013-2014. Always known as a strong defensive center and take-away master, O'Reilly turned on the offense to round out his role as a superb two-way player, effective at both ends of the ice. He took naturally to playing on the wing and both helped with and benefited from Matt Duchene's tremendous season at center. O'Reilly was aggressive and a danger any time he stepped on the ice, yet he did it all without taking penalties. His one infraction came as a result of not dropping a broken stick fast enough. Lady Byng finalist and top goal scorer on the Avs, O'Reilly was a big part of why the Avs took the division title and made a splash in the playoffs.

Regular Season

Stats
GP G A P +/- PIM PP SH GW S S%
80 28 36 64 -1 2 9 0 6 201 13.9

Advanced Stats 5 v. 5
CF% CF% Rel GF% GF% Rel Sh% Sv% PDO
48.40% 2.60% 49.10% -6.30% 8.80% 91.50% 100.3

Grade

A

Staff Comments

c6hor8: Spectacular offensive season and his defensive game is off the fucking charts.

mfured20: Moving Ryan to the wing was a pretty good move, and I really like the way it worked out.  His hive-mind with Duchene is a thing of beauty.  Plus leading the team in scoring was a pretty fine thing.

Mike: Slipped right into his new role with the team and had insta-chemistry with Duchene.  Hope that tandem plays together for years. 1st in Takeaways and PP goals and PP Assists and finished the season at 13.9% Shooting.

Playoffs

Stats
GP G A P +/- PIM PP SH GW S S%
7 2 4 6 3 0 0 0 0 14 14.3

Advanced Stats 5 v. 5
CF% CF% Rel GF% GF% Rel Sh% Sv% PDO
43.20% 2.90% 50.00% 11.90% 7.00% 94.30% 101.3

Grade

A-

Staff Comments

c6hor8: He looked better once Duchene came back but he was a threat the entire series basically running that line himself.

mfured20: Without his mind-reading, speedy soulmate for five games, O'Reilly had a pretty decent outing.  He had to work with some different linemates and come up with new ways to win, but he did end up with 6 points.

Mike: 9 Takeaways, 6 points, and got heavy minutes from Roy.  Pretty good playoff for O'Reilly.  Hope it's the first of many in an Avalanche uni.

Preseason Thoughts

Cole: Ryan O’Reilly is going to be the breakout player of the year, and he’s going to make everyone forget about that nasty contract business. The guy has such a high compete level, he wants to win, and he wants to play top minutes, not on the third line. Well… here’s your chance Ryan. I think that Ryan O’Reilly is going to be a force on the wing with Matt Duchene and P.A. Parenteau. He’s more of an offensive weapon than Jamie McGinn, who spent the majority of last season on that line, and his forechecking ability should increase the time of possession in the offensive zone. When Ryan O’Reilly had his first breakout season during Gabriel Landeskog’s rookie season, they created a lot of goals off by changing turnovers in the neutral zone into odd man rushes. That’s a nice tactic when you have Gabe Landeskog to carry the puck up ice, it’s a deadly offense when you have high speed finishers like Matt Duchene and P.A. Parenteau looking for a breakout pass up ice.

SteveHouse: I fully expect Ryan O'Reilly to put up big big points. His ability to drive possession will rack him up tons of assists with Duchene and Parenteau this season. Maybe even a few extra tap-in goals.

AJ: As one of Ryan O’Reilly’s biggest detractors so far in his career, it should come as no surprise that I view him as a potential letdown. While I think his skillset should make for a very fine winger, if he’s unable to keep up with the offensive production of the Duchene-Parenteau dynamic duo, his biggest remaining question mark will start to be answered with the kind of negativity he would like to avoid as he heads into Round 2 of Restricted Free Agency. I’m hoping, as I continually have been about O’Reilly, that I’m proven wrong and he makes that line even more effective than last year.

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