Jan 24, 2013, 10:36 AM EST
O’Brien, 29, hasn’t touched the ice this season, a strange development considering the Avs made him one of their biggest free-agent priorities this summer, inking O’Brien to a three-year, $6 million deal prior to him hitting the open market.
According to Mike Chambers of the Post, O’Brien “does not appear out of shape physically,” and is saying all the right things as he tries to get back in the lineup.
“Obviously, the coaching staff feels like I don’t give the team the best chance to win right now. It’s never fun,” O’Brien explained. “All you can do is continue to work hard, wait for your chance to get back in there, and when you do, you have to play well.”
That’s left O’Brien in the press box with fellow defenseman Matt Hunwick — but, on Thursday, Hunwik will make his season debut against the Jackets.
Given O’Brien’s notorious party-boy reputation (see here), it’s easy to speculate why things have gone they way they have in Colorado.
But to say he’s reverted to his old ways might not be accurate — last November, he was profiled in a glowing Post article about his maturation into the “ultimate Avs teammate” that included the following from Sacco:
“He’s been a real nice addition to our lineup. He plays hard and plays within himself,” Sacco said. “Shane’s a little bit older now (28), a little bit wiser. I had a good talk with him at the start of the year, and he just wants to play hockey now. Every player at the start of their career probably does something they wish they could take back. I don’t even know all the stuff that happened there, but you hear stuff. He’s been great here, and I see no issues as far as that side.”
It’s a situation worth monitoring moving forward. After Thursday’s game, the Avs head out on a four-game road trip that includes a stop in O’Brien’s old stomping ground — Vancouver — on Jan. 30.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:42 PM EST
The Winnipeg forward was tossed from the game.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:35 PM EST
Has the game’s opening goal tonight.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:20 PM EST
Gets a double-minor on the play.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:10 PM EST
Spent 13 seasons in Tampa Bay.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:05 PM EST
Opened the scoring for Tampa Bay.
Nov 26, 2014, 7:45 PM EST
Expected to join the Blues for practice on Friday.
Nov 26, 2014, 7:00 PM EST
Replaced by Andre Benoit.
Nov 26, 2014, 6:30 PM EST
Was hurt during Tuesday’s practice.
Nov 26, 2014, 5:31 PM EST
Two teams meet for the second time this season.
Nov 26, 2014, 5:12 PM EST
After an injury to Brian Elliott.
Nov 26, 2014, 5:00 PM EST
Yappy Lappy was at it again.
Nov 26, 2014, 4:06 PM EST
“Anybody can GM, anybody can be a president… whether you’re going to be good at it or not, who knows.”
Nov 26, 2014, 3:54 PM EST
San Jose coach is feeling the heat.
Nov 26, 2014, 3:20 PM EST
Click for video of the incident.
Nov 26, 2014, 2:57 PM EST
Minny dominated L.A. early in the season, but lost 2-1.
Nov 26, 2014, 2:45 PM EST
News and notes from around the crease…
Nov 26, 2014, 2:27 PM EST
Originally out 4-6 weeks, he’s back in just over three.
Nov 26, 2014, 2:04 PM EST
But how much public money will be required?
Nov 26, 2014, 1:03 PM EST
The Blues are one of the few teams in the NHL with a surplus of quality centers.
Nov 26, 2014, 12:57 PM EST
Jordan Binnington on his way up to St. Louis.
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