I’m devastated, the player describes the hardships in Boston. The club moved him instead of Cech because of the salary

Hockey Boston is currently the best team in the North American NHL and many of its players are having the season of a lifetime. At least one, however, is suffering in silence. He is defenseman Mike Reilly, who fell to the farm for non-hockey reasons.

In the last regular season, thanks to 17 points (4+13), he was the third most productive back of the Bruins. However, the 29-year-old American Reilly spent most of this year on a farm in Providence, which does not correspond to his quality at all.

He played only ten games in the main team and scored one record. On average, he spent less than 17 minutes on the ice.

In the first half of November, however, he fell to the lower AHL. “I was pretty devastated by it, I still am actually. I feel like I should be playing at the top,” he recently told the website The Athletic.

He’s far from the only one who thinks so. According to experts, Reilly clearly has the NHL. He underwent ankle surgery in the summer, but it didn’t affect him in any way. He’s still a valid quarterback with a decent passing game.

He fell to Providence following the return of key running back Charlie McAvoy, who missed the start of the season with a shoulder injury.

At the same time, Reilly could fit into the Boston roster. Next to McAvoy, Hampus Lindholm, Matt Grzelcyk, Connor Clifton, Derek Forbort and Brandon Carl, he could at least fill the role of the seventh back.

But it fell to the Czech defender Jakub Zbořil. The reason is obvious. Although Zboriel is slightly behind Reilly in terms of quality, he is only 25 years old and only takes up about a million dollars under the salary cap. If he went to the farm, on the free agent list, a necessary stop in his case, the competition would likely reach out for him.

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Someone will not just “steal” Reilly, who is four years older, with an annual salary of three million for this and next season.

In the current year, he was on the list of free agents several times. But it didn’t mean anything in the first cases. General manager Don Sweeney sent the point guard to the farm, as it were, to accommodate the extremely tight salary cap while moving other hockey players. Physically, Reilly remained in the NHL.

But in November, he really had to leave for Providence, because Sweeney could no longer find a place for his salary of three million.

“I know why I’m here. That it’s more or less because of the salary cap,” Reilly said of his stay in the AHL, where he has started regularly after six long years and so far has a great 14 points (4+10) after 20 games.

“When I was sent down, I definitely had a hard few days. I felt quite embarrassed. A lot of people probably wondered what happened, because not everyone is watching it in detail like my closest ones,” added the American.

It is unclear when or if he will return to Boston this year. The possibility is to come to the playoffs, when the salary cap no longer matters, or to fill the hole left by an injured teammate. At the moment, however, the Bruins are only forwards, including Tomáš Nosko.

Manager Sweeney knows Reilly doesn’t belong on the farm. According to the journalist Elliottea Friedmana tried to replace it by the end of November. However, clubs are worried about the defender’s relatively high contract, which is why no one took him off the list of free agents.

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When asked if he would be willing to move, Reilly said he didn’t know. “There was some communication, but to be honest, I got to the point where I don’t want to hear anything anymore. That’s what I told my agent. Actually, I don’t even have to say much, it’s in the hands of the general manager,” he noted.

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