O’Byrne played 172 games in the Colorado Avalanche uniform over the course of three seasons. He scored two goals and 19 assists, while leading the team in hits last season, along with blocked shots.
I’m not hugely surprised that the Avs moved him, considering the number of defensemen that the team has, and the fact that he is in the last year of his contract. He hasn’t had a great season this year (in fact, he’s been pretty awful some nights), so perhaps a change of scenery, and heading to a team in the midst of the playoff push will help him reboot.
Anyone who watched the dismal 2010-2011 season remembers that Ryan O’Byrne’s best friend and defensive partner that year was John-Michael Liles (they lived together, and O’Byrne said, in response to some ribbing about living together in a one room apartment,”he is a great man and I love him.”) Hopefully those two will be reunited as a pairing.
I’m more frustrated over how little Greg Sherman managed to obtain in exchange for O’Byrne. The Avs now have an extra fourth round pick. Because a fourth round pick is equal to a verified NHL player, right? I mean if Toronto was only willing to give a pick, couldn’t the Avs have wrangled a second rounder (someone more likely to make the team, and make it soonish?)
It appears that the Avs made only two trades before the deadline. Both players dealt were defensemen (Gaunce and O’Byrne) and in return the Avs earned a 4th round pick and Tomas Vincour (a power forward with 15 points in 86 games).