Thursday, November 15, 2007

Re-entry waivers: Paying for what's gone

The re-entry waiver provisions in the CBA are interesting business (if you're into that kind of thing), and something we don't often hear much about.

In the past week, however, we've seen two players claimed for a half-price discount, so it suddenly seems relevant:
To the extent the Player does require Waivers to be Loaned to a minor league affiliate, he cannot be Loaned or recalled without first clearing regular Waivers, and then cannot be Recalled to the NHL parent Club during the same League Year without also clearing a new Re-Entry Waiver procedure, pursuant to which the Player can be claimed by another NHL Club for fifty (50) percent of the contract's remaining amounts to be paid, with the balance to be paid by and charged to the waiving NHL Club (both amounts to be counted against each Club's Upper Limit, Actual Club Salary and Averaged Club Salary, and counted against the Players' Share)
In other words, we've got some dead money in play here.

On Tuesday, the Panthers claimed checking winger Garth Murray off re-entry waivers, meaning half of the remaining portion of his salary will remain on the books in Montreal. On Saturday, the Islanders reclaimed defenceman Freddy Meyer from Phoenix, getting a discount on a player they had lost on waivers earlier in the season.

How much dead money? Well, Murray was due $600,000 this year, but with around 20 per cent of the season already over, $120,000 of that is off the books. About half of the remaining $480,000, or $240,000 is now on the Habs' books for the rest of the season, something that shouldn't be a huge issue for a team projected to finish with $47.7-million on the books.

Meyer's making only $525,000, which translates to about $210,000 on Phoenix's cap hit. Not a big deal for a team barely over the salary floor this season.

Where things would get more interesting for a team is with a player with a larger contract than these two. The Devils recently demoted Richard Matvichuk, who passed through waivers on the way down, and on the way back through, a team can have him for half of the remaining value of his $1.37-million contract.

At this point, that would put more than $500,000 on the Devils' books, something Loophole Lou Lamoriello can avoid by keeping Matvichuk buried in Lowell all year. New Jersey is projected to finish less than $3-million shy of the $50.3-million salary cap.

Other players currently in the minors such as Denis Gauthier, Nolan Baumgartner, and Petr Cajanek would also have to clear re-entry waivers upon recall, which makes it likely they're banished to the AHL much of the season.

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At 2:03 p.m., November 15, 2007, Blogger saskhab said...

Murray was essentially given a chance with another organization. The cap hit is very insignificant at this point.

If I were New Jersey's owner, however, I'd ask Lou why I'm paying for a guy to play in the AHL for NHL money. Will New Jersey need that cap space? Seems unlikely. Put him on re-entry and save your boss some money.

At 2:08 p.m., November 15, 2007, Anonymous BDH said...

If I'm not mistaken, Lou's got Columbus paying half of whatever Sheldon Brookbank makes.

At 2:51 p.m., November 15, 2007, Blogger Menzies said...

Is there a link someone can provide for more waiver information?

I believe waiver's go something like this:

1) A player with a two way contract can be sent down to the farm team, and brought back up, no questions asked. True?

2) A player with a one way contract has to clear waivers should the team wish to 'demote' them to the farm team. There is a window of oppurtunity for another team to come along and pluck said player from said team and be on the hook for 100% of that players contract. True?

3) Should the player clear waivers and play for the NHL team's affiliate, and should that NHL team wish to bring that player back to the NHL club, that player must clear re-entry waivers, at which point should another team show interest in that player, that other team has a window of time to once again pluck that player and be on the hook for only 50% of that player's salary. True?

So if that is correct, then can a player on a two way contract be picked up off waivers? Can a player on a one way contract be shipped to a farm team for a conditioning stint should he be seriously injured?


At 3:23 p.m., November 15, 2007, Anonymous jamiebez said...

I'm pretty sure you can send a player down for a (short) conditioning stint and not risk losing him on waivers. Ottawa did that with Emery earlier this season.

At 4:42 p.m., November 15, 2007, Blogger James Mirtle said...

Menzies — it's quite a bit more complicated than all that. Some two-way players need to go through waivers, etc., given certain conditions. is the place to go for all this stuff.

At 5:21 p.m., November 15, 2007, Blogger Menzies said...

More complicated than my post? Impossible!

Thanks for the link...

At 5:40 p.m., November 15, 2007, Anonymous Dennis Prouse said...

I'm pretty sure you can send a player down for a (short) conditioning stint and not risk losing him on waivers. Ottawa did that with Emery earlier this season.

Yes, but it is for a maximum of three games, I believe, and it is voluntary on the player's part -- he doesn't have to go if he doesn't want to.

At 6:00 p.m., November 15, 2007, Blogger Darrell said...

I believe the conditioning stint is for a maximum of 2 weeks, not 3 games, and as prouse said, it must be agreed to by the player. I also believe their is a limit of 1 stint per player per year, and the player continues to get his NHL salary, even if they had a 2-way contract.

At 3:45 a.m., November 16, 2007, Anonymous Marcus Pettersson said...

Cajanek's in Russia, not in the AHL.

At 11:12 a.m., November 16, 2007, Blogger jkrdevil said...

As for Matvichuk don't expect him to be recalled he was waived as a last resort after the Devils couldn't get a deal done when Matvichuk essentially demanded a trade.

When Matvichuk wasn't dressed for the opener he made some comments that obviously didn't sit well with Sutter and the coaching staff and that sealed his fate with them. They tried to trade him but couldn't get anything done. I guess they figured it was better to pay him to play in Lowell and help develop some younger players than pay him to be a healthy scratch all year.


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