O'Reilly and Waivers - Updated

Kent Wilson
March 01 2013 10:16AM

Chris Jonhston of Sportsnet is claiming that had the Flames signed Ryan O'Reilly to a contract the young center would have had to clear waivers this year to play for the club. Meaning Calgary could have lost a first, a third, and then the player himself to a waiver claim.

This strikes me as implausible. First, because the rule should apply to both teams, not simply the Flames. Ryan O'Reilly signed the same contract with the Avs as he did with the Flames and was a free agent. Why would he have to clear only for the Flames? In addition, I can't see the Flames missing this in their due diligence. I also recall mention previously when we were discussing Karri Ramo that the current CBA erased this provision when it comes to RFA players.

In short, I doubt there's a story here.

UPDATE - according to TSN and Bob MacKenzie, the rule would likely have been interpreted against the Flames, meaning O'Reilly would have been exposed to waivers. I think Calgary would have had an argument in any subsequent greivance, but it's likely it could have been a terrible blow to the franchise had the Avs chosen to wallk away.

All of this rests on a clause depending on the player playing after the NHL season started. So, for instance, had the Flames sent an offer sheet to O'Reilly on Jan 15th when I originally wrote about the topic, this would have been moot.

I suppose it's moot now because Colorado matched the offer, but it seems Calgary dodged a giant bullet. It will be interesting to see if there's any fall-out for the decision-makers as a result. I assume "no" because no actual harm came to the organization, but I guess we'll see.

It's tough to see what was a bold, strategic move blow-up in Feaster's face like this. Sometimes the devil is in the details though. It also shows how hard it is to acquire players like O'Reilly if you aren't able to draft them.

UPDATE 2 - @TMrjmki posted this on twitter today, capturing this whole saga from a Flames fan perspective over the last 24 hours or so:

39d8109299a9795cb3b41a4e9b49d501
Former Nations Overlord. Current Fn contributor and curmudgeon For questions, complaints, criticisms, etc contact Kent @ kent.wilson@gmail. Follow him on Twitter here.
Avatar
#1 Stockley
March 01 2013, 10:19AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

It's just another attempt to mock the Flames. There is plenty of real life stuff to mock this franchise for. I don't think there's any real reason for reporters to start making stuff up.

The guy is wrong, the story is wrong. Daly himself said that under the old CBA it was true, under the new CBA he would have been free and clear to join the Flames.

Avatar
#2 Fats
March 01 2013, 10:20AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Yup... sounds like something from sportsnet... they are always so informative.

Avatar
#4 Stockley
March 01 2013, 10:21AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

@Fats

Why don't they just stick to talking about the Leafs like every other sports outlet in Canada?

Avatar
#5 Colin.S
March 01 2013, 10:21AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Sounds more like piling on at this point, like look, the Flames suck so lets find a lot more reasons why they suck.

I'm in agreement with you, I think the rule now only applies to UFA guys who sign after playing overseas. Pretty sure that Radulov didn't have to clear waivers last year either. Something doesn't make a lot of sense and I sure hope that SN checked with the league to make sure this is accurate, cause if the Flames knew what they were doing, then SN is gonna have egg on their face soon.

Avatar
#6 VK63
March 01 2013, 10:22AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

But spec just gave props to Chris Johnson on Twitter and added that Feasters head should be on a plate.

Im so confused.

Actually not. It was funny for a minute as I am firmly from the camp that competence and flames management are at odds.

However, in the end it is yet another illustration of how completely pathetic sports media has become. Facts? We don't need no stinking facts!!

Avatar
#7 cpbrowner
March 01 2013, 10:26AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
1
props

New CBA States:

"All Players on a Club’s Reserve List and Restricted Free Agent List will be exempt from the application of CBA 13.23 Waivers in the case of a mid-season signing. For further clarity, if Club A trades such a Player to Club B and Club B signs the Player to an SPC, such Player will be exempt from the application of CBA 13.23."

Source: http://cdn.agilitycms.com/nhlpacom/PDF/Summary-of-Terms-1-10-13.pdf

Avatar
#8 Stockley
March 01 2013, 10:27AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

@VK63

Social media has become too reliant on speed. They don't necessarily check into their facts before they hit the post button. Breaking a story first is far more important than getting it right the first time and being factual. There is so much misinformation out there it's no wonder I think we're getting dumber as a species.

Avatar
#9 Stockley
March 01 2013, 10:29AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

How long before Proteau grabs this and runs with it? He's due for another "Flames need to blow it up and rebuild" story soon.

Avatar
#11 Colin.S
March 01 2013, 10:30AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
cpbrowner wrote:

New CBA States:

"All Players on a Club’s Reserve List and Restricted Free Agent List will be exempt from the application of CBA 13.23 Waivers in the case of a mid-season signing. For further clarity, if Club A trades such a Player to Club B and Club B signs the Player to an SPC, such Player will be exempt from the application of CBA 13.23."

Source: http://cdn.agilitycms.com/nhlpacom/PDF/Summary-of-Terms-1-10-13.pdf

This to reads EXACTLY that ROR would NOT have had to clear waivers. As long as a player is on a teams reserve list he would not have to clear waivers. Again as I said previously the waivers is only going to affect players that are for the most part UFAs.

Avatar
#14 Stockley
March 01 2013, 10:37AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

@Kent Wilson

For all his faults I'd like to think Feaster is above making this sort of colossal blunder. He's a lawyer after all, he has built teams that won in both the NHL and AHL. If the article turns out to be correct, that it was an oversight on the part of the Flames front office... then all hope might truly be lost because you can't fix stupid.

Avatar
#15 Colin.S
March 01 2013, 10:41AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

The inclusion of "a club's reserve list" is the tripping point for me. Does that mean ROR would NOT have been on the Flames reserve/RFA list before being signed and therefore subject to waivers.

Strikes me as possible but, again, unlikely.

The way I read it is:

ROR is on COL reserve list, and is allowed to be signed, because he is on the list and gets signed he does not need to clear waivers.

The thing is, I do not get the signing him this year and then waiting till next year to sign him thing, cause you lose this years picks, which would have really be a kick in the ass, because the player you signed can't get you out of the hole.

No where in there does it read to me it has to be THAT team that signs him.

Avatar
#16 Colin.S
March 01 2013, 10:53AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

"All Players on a Club’s Reserve List and Restricted Free Agent List will be exempt from the application of CBA 13.23 Waivers in the case of "A" mid-season signing. For further clarity, if Club A trades such a Player to Club B and Club B signs the Player to an SPC, such Player will be exempt from the application of CBA 13.23"

The word in CAPS and " is the big deal. It does not say what kind of signing, as well it does not specify teams, it just says A signing. Again it doesn't specify that the team that signs the player has to be the one with the player on it's reserve list. There are a lot of IFS here, but to me, that reads that as long as a player was on a teams reserve list he can be signed and not go through waivers.

Avatar
#17 cpbrowner
March 01 2013, 10:57AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

@Colin.S

Exactly my thoughts. It's unclear because it doesn't mention anything about offer sheets. I just can't see Feaster screwing this up, they have been looking into this for weeks.

Avatar
#18 RexLibris
March 01 2013, 10:57AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

That sounds like a very suspicious article to me.

I cannot imagine a scenario where the League and PA would put something like that into the agreement. It would make player movement and signings much more restrictive.

I don't know that this is piling on, but it certainly is an example of someone needing to check their facts before putting eink to epaper.

Avatar
#20 Stockley
March 01 2013, 11:01AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

@RexLibris

Feaster was a lawyer before he sort of fell into life as a sports exec. I just find it really hard to swallow that a man with a background in law would fail to look at the small print and overlook something like this.

Avatar
#21 exsanguinator
March 01 2013, 11:05AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
cpbrowner wrote:

New CBA States:

"All Players on a Club’s Reserve List and Restricted Free Agent List will be exempt from the application of CBA 13.23 Waivers in the case of a mid-season signing. For further clarity, if Club A trades such a Player to Club B and Club B signs the Player to an SPC, such Player will be exempt from the application of CBA 13.23."

Source: http://cdn.agilitycms.com/nhlpacom/PDF/Summary-of-Terms-1-10-13.pdf

This reads to me as the player not having to go through waivers in the event of an offer sheet.

Once the player is signed he immediately becomes listed on the teams RFA list and is then exempt from waivers.

At least, that's what I get from it.

Avatar
#22 redricardo
March 01 2013, 11:07AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Check out Eric Francis' twitter timeline. He sent out one saying that this egregious oversight means that Feasters time in the NHL is numbered (apparently everyone is piling on one side or the other... Lol).

He then released an article written by himself praising Feaster for the bold move shortly thereafter.

People make me laugh.

Avatar
#24 Stockley
March 01 2013, 11:12AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

Well, once he's signed he's not RFA anymore is the thing.

At some point Feaster will have to speak about this. I assume he'll clear it up either way.

I'm sure Jay is aware of it by now. They're probably tearing apart the ins and outs of the language of the CBA to make sure they weren't wrong before they address it.

Good lord. McGrattan should feel at home. A dancing bear in what is turning into a real life circus.

Avatar
#25 Colin.S
March 01 2013, 11:22AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Again the CBA language is not "possessive", meaning that there doesn't appear to be language in there indicating that it has to be THAT team signing it's own RFAs and things like that. It appears very open to interpretation.

Avatar
#27 the-wolf
March 01 2013, 11:29AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

TSN reporting Daly confirming O'Reilly would have had to go through waivers.

Yeesh.

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=417108

HAR! What a joke the Flames are, but tell me Kent, could they still have sat him for the year and kept him or no?

Avatar
#29 Stockley
March 01 2013, 11:31AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

TSN reporting Daly confirming O'Reilly would have had to go through waivers.

Yeesh.

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=417108

Words fail me at the moment. Inept just doesn't do this laughing stock justice at the moment. I don't know if there's a word that exists right now to sum up this entire mess.

Avatar
#31 fretsey
March 01 2013, 11:34AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

The fact that ROR apparently played 2 games in Russia AFTER the NHL started has something to do with this,no?

Avatar
#32 Colin.S
March 01 2013, 11:36AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

Im going to give Feaster the benefit of the doubt here I think. The rule is not only obscure and the situation exceptional, but the language of the rule itself is ambiguous. Im guessing if this all went down and O'Reilly got claimed the Flames would have filed a grievance with a chance of winning.

I'd put it as a certainty of winning, the language is so vague and obtuse that when I read it, there is no possessive language in that at all, meaning it doesn't specific the signing team has to be the team with the player on it's list.

Avatar
#34 exsanguinator
March 01 2013, 11:38AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

http://www.mcsorleys-stick.com/nhl-waiver-rules-explained/

A player who is playing in Europe, not on loan from an NHL team, who wishes to return to the NHL after the start of the season, must first go through waivers (e.g. Nabokov), unless…

…when that player left the NHL his rights were still controlled by an NHL team and at the time he left he still had waiver exemption remaining (e.g. Radulov).

For what it's worth. Either way it looks like according to standard waiver rules he would not have been exempt.

Avatar
#35 Stockley
March 01 2013, 11:38AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

@Colin.S

It's still a big black eye for a franchise, GM and fan base that really doesn't need another punch in the face. When does it end?

Avatar
#36 TTT
March 01 2013, 11:41AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

If this is true, we really have to question the entire management of the the Flames. Between the odd signing, bizarre demotions and this, I really have no faith in the current management.

Also, again if this is true, I am surprised that the Avalanche didn't stick it to the Flames by taking the draft picks and watching the Flames fall to last place without the help of ROR.

Avatar
#37 redricardo
March 01 2013, 11:47AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Colorado could bring him back without going on waivers since he was on their RFA list.

Since Calgary wouldn't be bringing him back without compensation (1st and 3rd) it could be argued that the first and third involved traded O'Reilly from Colorado's RFA list to Calgary's RFA list.

I think the most logical argument is Kent's, goes to limbo, Calgary files a grievance they most likely win. Although I am very curious to hear Feaster's take on this.

Avatar
#38 everton fc
March 01 2013, 11:49AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
TTT wrote:

If this is true, we really have to question the entire management of the the Flames. Between the odd signing, bizarre demotions and this, I really have no faith in the current management.

Also, again if this is true, I am surprised that the Avalanche didn't stick it to the Flames by taking the draft picks and watching the Flames fall to last place without the help of ROR.

Perhaps the Avs will stick it to the Flames. They should.

No way management understood this, if true. What a circus!

Jason Botterill for GM.

Avatar
#39 fretsey
March 01 2013, 11:52AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

Yes, that's what it all rests on apparently.

Thanks Kent, I know it's all moot now..but had the Flames acquired ROR and had to sit him for the rest of the year I wonder how that would have affected ROR's Qualifying Offer? I thought there was a minimum # of games needed to be played the prior year...etc. Amusing musings...lol

Avatar
#40 the-wolf
March 01 2013, 11:54AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

Im going to give Feaster the benefit of the doubt here I think. The rule is not only obscure and the situation exceptional, but the language of the rule itself is ambiguous. Im guessing if this all went down and O'Reilly got claimed the Flames would have filed a grievance with a chance of winning.

Flames should've done their homework first is the point.

Avatar
#42 rubbertrout
March 01 2013, 12:05PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

The inclusion of "a club's reserve list" is the tripping point for me. Does that mean ROR would NOT have been on the Flames reserve/RFA list before being signed and therefore subject to waivers.

Strikes me as possible but, again, unlikely.

If they sign him as an RFA, and he is still an RFA for them (presumably because of the qualifying offer scenario) then how would he not be?

I guess the issue is how or when this changes depending on the "before" he signs.

Avatar
#43 Michael
March 01 2013, 12:07PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

'The rule is not only obscure and the situation exceptional, but the language of the rule itself is ambiguous'

Feaster as a former Asst GM and current GM should know the rule book inside out. On top of that, he is a lawyer, obscure, exceptional situations and ambigous rules should be his norm. Luckily, they matched the offer and it didn't become an issue, but even so, this has to qualify as a big black mark against Feaster and the front office.

Avatar
#44 Stockley
March 01 2013, 12:09PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

If anyone other than Bobby Mac were reporting on this I might still be in Feaster's corner. At this point I don't know what to believe. I'm sure we'll get a presser later on today about how the Flames interpretation of the rules led them to believe it would be in their favor, they were confident they would win a grievance if it came to that, etc.

The sad fact this has become a story this morning is just more heartbreak for we the faithful. Being a Flames fan just feels more and more like one of those friendships I had when in middle school. The sort of friend you never talk to anymore but hold onto out of familiarity and history. You can take it or leave it really, but at the same time it's just too hard to give up on it completely no matter how disillusioned you have become. I thought being a sports fan was supposed to be a pleasant distraction from the doldrums of every day life? How did it come to this?

Avatar
#45 Kevin R
March 01 2013, 12:18PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Wow! I'm speechless. What a freaking mess. The last thing we need is to have a new GM at this point of time but if this was the GM's oversite, it would have to be treated no different than Tallons fiasco. Dont know what to say. If Edwards puts up with this, Iwould be shocked, so I would imagine Weisbrod would take over asbeing the puppet. Jerome, waive your NTC as soon as you possibly can & GTF out of here as fast as you can!!!

Avatar
#46 Stockley
March 01 2013, 12:24PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Kevin R wrote:

Wow! I'm speechless. What a freaking mess. The last thing we need is to have a new GM at this point of time but if this was the GM's oversite, it would have to be treated no different than Tallons fiasco. Dont know what to say. If Edwards puts up with this, Iwould be shocked, so I would imagine Weisbrod would take over asbeing the puppet. Jerome, waive your NTC as soon as you possibly can & GTF out of here as fast as you can!!!

I think Edwards is part of the problem. This bunch is pathetic and doesn't care. We all have days where we don't feel like showing up to work and go through the motions; it's happening far too much in Calgary right now.

If I went to work several times a month and didn't pull my weight I would probably be fired. It's unfortunate sometimes you can't do the same with hockey players who stop showing up for work and are just there to collect their pay...

The organization is a damn mess from ownership right down to the clowns on the ice.

Welcome back to Calgary Mr. McGrattan. You'll fit right in.

Avatar
#47 beloch
March 01 2013, 12:26PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

The regulations aren't voted on by parliament and written into the charter for Pete's sake! If they could be interpreted in such a way that a player signed to an offer-sheet has to pass through waivers before entering the league, they would have updated the rules. Not doing so would have made them look even more foolish than Feaster would have if ROR had to stay in the KHL for the rest of the season (Honestly, picking him up would have still been a smart move even if that were the case).

Avatar
#48 backburner
March 01 2013, 12:30PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Even if they were aware of this and did choose to sit him.. what would be the point in acquiring him?

I'm sure there is some wiggle room in that rule somewhere...

Avatar
#49 Greg
March 01 2013, 12:33PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
1
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

Im going to give Feaster the benefit of the doubt here I think. The rule is not only obscure and the situation exceptional, but the language of the rule itself is ambiguous. Im guessing if this all went down and O'Reilly got claimed the Flames would have filed a grievance with a chance of winning.

I'd like to think you are right about that, but the "For further clarity" clause seems to imply someone had thought of this scenario and specifically attempted to address it. That reads like the club with the player on its reserved or rfa list would have to trade those rights to another club BEFORE they sign that player, or else they wouldn't get the waiver exemption. It's not black and white, (ie it doesn't explicitly state what happens without that trade), but the fact that its there at all indicates that was considered and was the spirit of the agreement.

Which makes sense too... RFAs would be entitled to either wait for an offer sheet, or go play in Europe while negotiating, but couldn't threaten to play in Europe indefinitely and refusing to negotiate until they got an offer sheet they liked. It sounds very much like some clubs explicitly asked for that waiver exemption clause, and the league attempted to caveat it so as not to give the players additional and unintended negotiating leverage.

That wouldn't bode well for a flames grievance case. Probably couldn't have gotten RoR exempted and at best would have been given the option to keep him in Europe until next year. Even that is dubious... Once a third club got involved by claiming him, they'd be grieved if the transaction was reversed.

Could have been very, very ugly for flames...

Avatar
#50 seve927
March 01 2013, 12:35PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

I'm of the understanding that other offer sheets were given to O'Reilly (Vancouver, apparently, according to Steinberg last night). So I don't think the Flames were the only ones unaware. And the error made by Colorado in actually matching would seem to me to be much greater.

The whole thing is a bit of a joke.

Comments are closed for this article.