The Bruins went into the trade deadline with plenty of areas to improve their team. One of those areas has been adding depth to an injury-decimated blueline. So the Bruins went out and added one of the better lesser-known names on the market. That player is Mike Reilly a 27-year-old left defenseman. The Bruins sent a 2022 3rd round pick to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for Reilly. A 3rd round pick isn’t just some throwaway trade chip so let’s get to know one of the newest members of the Black and Gold.
Mike Reilly’s Early Years
Reilly was drafted by the Columbus Blue Jackets 98th overall back in 2011 out of the USHS-Prep league. He would go on to play three years at the University of Minnesota. In 117 NCAA games, Mike scored 89 points including 75 points in his last 80 games. Reilly never signed with Columbus but on July 1st, 2015 he signed a two-year ELC with the Minnesota Wild. His time with the Wild was split between the NHL and AHL. In 84 NHL games over three seasons, Reilly scored 4 goals and 18 points with a -9 playing just over 12 minutes per game. Over 103 AHL games, Reilly showed more of his potential with 11 goals and 54 points.
On February 26th, 2018 the Wild traded Mike Reilly to Montreal for a 2019 5th round pick. Reilly would play 19 games for Montreal that season scoring 8 points all assists playing over 20 minutes a game. In 38 games for the Wild that season, Reilly only played 12 minutes per game. The 18-19 season would see Reilly play in 57 games scoring 3 goals and 11 points playing almost 19 minutes per game. The 19-20 season would see Mike fall Montreal’s depth chart. In 14 games Reilly scored 4 points with a +2 in 14 minutes per game. On January 2nd, 2020 Mike Reilly was traded to Ottawa for Andrew Sturtz and a 2021 5th round pick. In his 90 games for Montreal Reilly would finish with 3 goals and 23 points with a +3 playing over 18 minutes per game.
Mike Reilly played in 30 games for Ottawa in 2020. However, unlike in Montreal, he would have a major role-playing almost 20 minutes per game. In those 30 games, Reilly scored 1 goal and 12 points with a -8. This brings us to the 20-21 season. In 40 games for the Sens, this season Reilly had 19 points all assists with a -2 playing 18:36 per game. Reilly’s 19 points ranked 7th on the Senators and his -2 ranked 2nd among players with over 20 games. Mike was also 2nd in assists and 3rd in time on ice.
Now to an interesting advanced stat called point shares. Point shares look at a player’s impact and quantify it into points added to a team’s standing. Mike Reilly ranked first in both defensive and overall point shares with a 1.4 and 2.5 respectively. For reference, Marchand currently leads the Bruins in point shares with a 6.5. Reilly’s 2.5 ranks him 7th on the Bruins. His 36 blocked shots rank 3rd on the Bruins and his 56 hits rank 6th.
Outlook/Final Thoughts On Mike Reilly
The immediate future has Mike Reilly slotting into the Bruins’ top 4 defensemen. He could keep that role likely playing with Carlo once he is healthy unless more moves are made. As a pending UFA Reilly could just be a rental. However, he is still just 27 and is only making 1.5 million dollars this season. Depending on what kind of a raise Reilly is looking for he could be in town for the foreseeable future. Seattle might have something to say about that but time will tell.
Over his last 141 games between Montreal and Ottawa Reilly was only a -8. Considering how bad the Sens have been and that Montreal wasn’t much better finishing 24th last season that is an impressive number. While not the most physical or offensive defenseman he has shown flashes of offensive potential. That -8 also shows he is very competent in his own zone. If Reilly continues to improve he could be one of the best deals this deadline. This is a step in the right direction for the Bruins’ defense. Boston still needs a net clearing physical defender with Miller and Carlo, not 100%. Keep checking back for all the latest trade news and as always Stay safe out there and LET’S GO BRUINS!
Featured image courtesy of Sara Schmidle/NHLI via Getty Images.