I realize we’ve all more-or-less agreed to a moratorium on the word “epic,” but had the following events happened, it would’ve been somewhat justified.
In a nutshell:
Had the Colorado Avalanche not matched the offer sheet the Calgary Flames signed Ryan O’Reilly to, they would’ve given up first and third round picks, then had to put him on waivers.
As in, the last place team – as of today, the Columbus Blue Jackets – could’ve picked him up. For nothing. That’s because O’Reilly played in the KHL after the lockout ended, meaning to come back, he would have to clear waivers for any team picking him up (except the one that retains his rights, in this case Colorado). This is to prevent teams picking up random European players after the trade deadline.
Again: Jay Feaster, the General Manager of the Calgary Flames, made the decision to potentially cost his team two high draft picks (likely a top-10 first rounder, possibly higher) to get Columbus a player (or whoever ended up grabbing him, because someone would) . Worse, it seems like there was no option to “sit him out for a year” as some have suggested to keep him.
The GM is on the hook here. I don’t care if the agent didn’t know, Colorado didn’t know, if nobody knew: before you pull the trigger you have to know what you’re pulling the trigger on. You’re THE GUY here. You Manage things. …Generally.
For much, much more on this, check out the piece below by Chris Johnston of Sportsnet, who if you weren’t aware, is very good at his job:
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) March 1, 2013
A more thorough look at the situation below.