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Ryan McLeod says he took less money to help the Edmonton Oilers win the Stanley Cup

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Photo credit:Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports
Woz
By Woz
6 months ago
After Ryan McLeod and the Edmonton Oilers settled on a two-year, $2.1-million AAV deal Monday night, the forward met with the media the following day.
In his media availability, he went go over why he signed the contract he did, and how much the salary cap impacted his deal. His main motivator, however, is the Stanley Cup.
“You know coming back to this group, there’s not a lot of money but I think on most of the teams that are hopefully looking to make a deep push in the playoffs there’s not a lot of money on a lot of those teams. I think you kinda gotta sacrifice a bit for the group, and if you can sacrifice a bit and we win a Cup. I think it all plays out. (I’m) just looking to have a huge year for this team, I think winning gets everyone paid and makes everyone happier so just looking to do that”
McLeod on why he didn’t go down the route of arbitration:
“I think… as guys signed new deals, the value of (yourself) changes and you know going in we thought there was a pretty fair value and I think it worked best for me and the team. I think both parties are happy, so I think it works better not having to go through arbitration.”
On the Oilers planning to have a shorter offseason with players returning to Edmonton earlier:
“I think everyone’s super excited, I think we’re all gonna head back pretty early and kind of get things rolling. The group is super motivated. Obviously not the way we wanted to end the season last year but I think you know the group we have for this year, it’s most of the same guys you know a few additions so we’re super excited to get the ball rolling and hopefully make a big step this year”
On what he aims to build upon personally heading in the 2023-2024 season:
“Just sticking with my roots of being hard defensively and trying to be more of an energy guy but I think if I could keep chipping it on the offense and pick up on that area, it obviously helps the team and helps my game too. Just hopefully helping the team any way we can”
It’s good to hear that he’s focused on the defensive side of his game. NHL_Sid wrote on the site last month about how important that area of his play for the Edmonton Oilers.
“In the past two seasons, McLeod has been on-ice for 2.28 5v5 goals against per 60; no current player on Edmonton’s roster has a lower (better) goals against rate. To add on, per PuckIQ, the Oilers have out-scored elite competition at a ratio of 15 to 7 with McLeod on-ice at 5v5 in the past two seasons. The sample against elites isn’t huge, but these results are a sign that McLeod is gradually emerging into a true shutdown defensive option”
McLeod himself believes the team can improve when it comes to general consistency.
“I think we gotta work on as a group is being more consistent and bringing it every night, I think when our team is playing on our best you know no one really could hang with us so that’s a good sign but I think the consistency needs to be there and then going into next season I think we’re a really motivated group, I think no one’s really too happy after last season or winning one round, I think we have a lot to prove and we’re a hungry group coming in”
Love to hear this from McLeod. Last season the Oilers were very inconsistent from the start of the season up until January. It almost felt like after every win it would be coupled with a loss or two. Crazy to think that a few more wins in those early months could’ve had the Oilers winning the Pacific division.
Fortunately for Ryan McLeod, he won’t be waiting until September to sign a contract this time.

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