"The only time you get real collective cuts, including by non-OPEC, is when prevailing prices are at rock bottom lows," he told CNBC. "My sense is the fear factor is not strong enough to get countries to do anything but promise cuts that they never intend to make."
To be sure, OPEC and world oil producers have been here before. In the midst of an economic slump in 2001, non-OPEC producers including Russia, Norway and Mexico agreed to cut 500,000 barrels a day to boost the impact of OPEC's 1.5-million-barrel pullback.
Russia was widely seen ignoring its pledge to cut 150,000 barrels a day, and Norway eventually abandoned its quotas.
Now, Russia is ostensibly back on board. But many analysts are focusing on the phrasing of Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak's pledge, which McNally called a "litany of hedges, caveats and conditions."
After the agreement was announced, Novak said, "Russia will gradually cut output in the first half of 2017 by up to 300,000 barrels per day, on a tight schedule as technical capabilities allow."
Analysts say that statement gives Russia plenty of wiggle room in terms of when its producers begin cutting, how much they cut and their capability to cut.
The country has recently bought itself breathing room as well. On Wednesday, the Kremlin announced it had agreed to sell a 19.5-percent stake in Russia's top oil producer, Rosneft, for $11 billion.