Born September 30, 1986 (age 25) in Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Center for the Pittsburgh Penguins
Please note that this entrant in the Better Know a Hockey Card series has been traded rather recently and not many photos of him exist yet in his new colors. That’s not an error right up there. Anyway! The O’Reilly brothers–younger brother Ryan plays for Colorado–grew up in a small town in Ontario and played minor hockey in town before making the leap to the Windsor Spitfires for juniors. He played three seasons with the Spits, jumping from 21 points in his first year to 73 in his second and 99 in his third. Drafted 150th overall in 2005 by Nashville, O’Reilly spent that last year with Windsor and then got up to the bigger game.
O’Reilly honed his game with the Milwaukee Admirals for two seasons before making his Nashville debut in 2008-09. His first goal came against LA’s Jonathan Quick on March 28 of 2009. He got two other goals and two assists in 11 games played with the Predators that season. 2011 was a little tumultuous for O’Reilly and he’s really just now settling down: after signing a one-year extension with Nashville in July, he was traded to Phoenix in October. After being placed on waivers by Phoenix, Pittsburgh got him in February of this year. Actually his first game as a Penguin was the one against Boston! But he got his first point against the Devils a little later.
Last season with Nashville, O’Reilly got six goals and 12 assists with two penalty minutes in 38 games. Maybe being shuffled around a little bit might inspire him to increase his production. Or there’s always trying to go to Colorado and play with little bro!