Thursday October 19th 2017


Brian O’Reilly enters the Hall O’Shame

135403875_stdThis may be a little less rambling than that other manifesto of a few weeks back, but not by much. Ask yourself this – would you want the man behind this email coaching your life? Would you allow the man behind this email to watch your pet turtle, unsupervised, for longer than 3 minutes? I highly doubt any grown man who is in the middle of a multi-million dollar negotiation wants the public to think he needs his Daddy to fight his battles for him.


Brian O’Reilly, the father of unsigned Avs center Ryan O’Reilly, sent an email to me today. It was his response to someone who was presumably an Avs fan and wanted to know more about Ryan’s situation, and to give best wishes toward him.

He gave me permission to reprint that response here. Brian is a life coach, running his own business called Human Potential Plus. It has been lightly touched up for a couple minor spelling and punctuation things, but reads as follows:

“Thank you for your kind words. This is not about money and never has been. As you know you don’t build team based on dollars. If you did then the people with the most expensive players would be our champion . You build a team on its character. Ryan is not a superstar based on skill but character. I know this for a fact the players he was yesterday will not be the player he was tomorrow he will continue to grow learn and thrive .The world values it less and less, yet everyone is looking for those players that eat sleep and drink the game and are unselfish plus compete because they are intrinsically motivated for excellence. This is another trait humankind is slowly losing! It used to be a bigger part of our game because we used to let kids develop character and test themselves without all the importance put on systems methods and criteria of adults. My children were raised in an environment of sport where Athletics was held up as something you do to develop your sense of personhood, qualities of-collaboration,team play and most important the development of your character, mental toughness as an individual and it was FUN from which you Learn. How many goals you got or how many points you got was not how you measured yourself. What was important was giving your best day in day out. Leadership was shown on a daily bases, by treating people well even those they miss treat you. In the world today we are losing our sense of meaning and purpose my by devaluing people worth in ways that are ridiculous And Absurd.

If my son was getting 95 in math we wouldn’t ask him to get 65 so the rest of the students in the classroom could feel better about themselves. Many parents have stories about their kids excelling in certain areas but they are asked to tone it down because you’re making the other kids not look as good or feels good about themselves. Is this not a Testament to the fact that we are not teaching our kids character. This would never happen in the classroom. So to a kid who isn’t as Academically gifted but in the arts or character, athletically Or proficiency in a certain skill why does it have to be devalued. So we ask the person who has a tremendous amount of character to take less money for his character yet it is the essential building block any team matter of fact the key Ingredient. Many coaches will tell you that On any given day anybody can beat anybody , But the teams that win in the end are the teams that have the strongest character ,the will to win the necessity to compete but more important strive to be better. These players of character hate losing and when they do lose they self evaluate they don’t evaluate the other teammates they take responsibility for the loss, learn and come back and beat you the next time. I know the character of my son and when he heard that Gabriel was chosen as the captain he was thrilled for him and said he’s got a great work ethic and he’s a great player he’d make a good captain.

So when I looked at the Colorado Avalanche and the negotiations l see well-prepared agent, Willing to negotiate but an organization that does not look at the necessity of character. They can pick their players anyway they choose to and it’s none of my business or my son’s business. As a high-performance coach and I have been doing this for a lot of years. Character, compete level , dedication, the love of the game,is what are the building blocks for dynasties. That is a long-term picture but it has to be always the short-term value. Character has to win out over skill that is why it takes a lot of skilled players a lot of losses to understand the character element of the game . When we call an athlete mature beyond his years what we’re referring to is his character they already have developed .We practice , we play games in order to win a championship. The team that develops the most character will be the team in the end that succeeds most of the time.
Ryan loved playing at Colorado he has great teammates,friends and great fans.
Look at the character of (Craig) Anderson as a goalie does that not speak for itself. He’s a gamer, he wins.

Quality of character is really hard to describe but you recognize it instantly in someone’s behavior. Each one of us has to decide the value of their own character and the character of others by how they treat you.
It’s as simple as that! The Colorado Avalanche I believe have treated Ryan fairly. He had three wonderful years with them. Where we go from here will be a matter of character.”

I don’t have anything exciting to report on the O’Reilly situation. Talks seem to have broken off for good and the only thing left is a trade or an offer sheet.

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