When the Rangers waived centers Todd White and Tim Kennedy yesterday, many assumed that one or both would be claimed, especially Kennedy, who comes very cheap. However, both cleared waivers. Since both have cleared waivers, their salaries ($2.375 for White, $550,000 for Kennedy) are removed from the Rangers cap. The Rangers have 30 days to assign them to the AHL, or else their salaries will be added back to the cap, and they will both need to clear waivers again.
As expected, the Rangers have placed centers Vinny Prospal and Chris Drury on injured reserve. Their salaries will remain on the books, but the Rangers will be allowed to go over the salary cap ceiling, if necessary, by their combined salaries. The total amount the Rangers are allowed to be over the cap is the prorated amount of both players salaries for the number of days spent on IR. With two of the three on ice leaders out, it’s going to be interesting to see who gets the temporary A’s.
Derek Stepan won the Lars-Erik Sjoberg award, as voted on by the Rangers press, for the top rookie in camp. This was probably the easiest vote for the award in history.
As per Larry Brooks, defenseman Wade Redden will be placed on waivers today at noon. It looks like the Rangers have found his replacement in either Ryan McDonagh, Michael Sauer, Garnet Exelby, Alexei Semenov, or any of the other young defensemen. Redden was given an ultimatum at the end of last season, saying show up ready to play, or be sent to the AHL. It looks like he either wasn’t ready to play, or the defenseman has just seen the new NHL pass him by. So long Wade.
Some quotes from GM Glen Sather, as per Andrew Gross:
“It’s always difficult changing somebody’s life but you have to do what’s right for the team.”
“There was no sense waiting to waive Wade Redden, wants to give younger players more of a chance”
Glen Sather told Wade Redden after last season unless he came back “and really got off to a great start” this would happen.
Update 10:45am: As per Andrew Gross, Redden will be considering his options for a few days before making a decision. He can look into playing in Europe/Russia, he can retire, he can refuse the assignment, or he can show up in Hartford, where Sather has guaranteed him playing time. If he shows up in Hartford, he’s going to have to refrain from being a locker room cancer, no matter how disgruntled he is. Oh happy days!
Redden has four years at a $6.5 million cap hit per year. He makes $6.5 million this year and next, and $5 million the following two years.
Several Twitter posts have said the Rangers waived Donald Brashear, Aaron Voros, and Patrick Rissmiller. There are rumors of them being bought out, but the only one that makes sense to buyout from a salary cap perspective would be Voros. Rissmiller hasn’t been with the team since he signed his contract, and a buyout would just add an unnecessary cap hit. A Brashear buyout won’t save any money, as he is on an over-35 contract. A Voros buyout would result in a $400,000 cap hit this season ($600,000 savings), and a $300,000 cap hit next season, when Voros would be off the books.
I do not believe these players were waived for potential buyouts, but waived to create cap room. Waiving Brashear saves the Rangers $100,000, and Voros saves the Rangers $1 million. Waiving Rissmiller is a technicality, as his salary has never counted against the Rangers cap hit. That’s $1.1 million saved by waiving them. It’s a simple matter of clearing cap space, much like what the Rangers did at the trade deadline.
Still posting from my phone. Enver Lisin and Aaron Voros have been waived.
Via Larry Brooks, the Rangers have claimed backup goalie Alex Auld off re-entry waivers from the Stars. The team will assume a $500,000 cap hit with the move, which saves them about $350,000 compared to carrying Chad Johnson.
Auld, 29, will be a free agent after the season, and is 9-6 with a 3.00 GAA and a 0.894 SV% in 21 games this year. Dallas had no place for him following their pickup of Kari Lehtonen. It’s hard not to like the move, the Rangers freed up some cap space, got a veteran backup, and can let Johnson and Matt Zaba continue to play regularly in Hartford.
Courtesy of Blueshirt Banter, who consolidated all of the beat writers’ twitter updates, Artem Anisimov is finally getting his shot between Vinny Prospal and Marian Gaborik on the top line. I expect fantastic results from him. Erik Christensen is centering the third line between Chris Higgins and Ales Kotalik.
Also, to most people’s surprise, Steve Valliquette cleared waivers. Chad Johnson has been recalled.
Update 4:15pm: As per user dbmaven from Blueshirt Banter (and Jordan from here at BSB), defenseman Ilkka Heikkinen has been recalled. Wade Redden will not be ready for the game against Buffalo on Saturday.
The Rangers made a pair of waiver moves today, waiving goaltender Steve Valliquette and claiming forward Erik Christensen from Anaheim. The Valliquette move is unsurprising, considering he has been less than reliable this year. Valliquette’s cap-hit was $725,000. It is likely that Chad Johnson will be called up to replace him as the backup goaltender. So far this season, Johnson has posted a line of 10-6-1, with a 2.10 GAA and a .926 SV%, and will represent a cap hit of a prorated $850,000.
Christensen, an RFA after this season, will be a cap hit of $750,000 (prorated). The soon-to-be 26 year old winger played 9 games for the Ducks, putting up no points and a -3. With 13 forwards already on the NHL roster for the Rangers (Christensen makes 14), it’s safe to assume another roster move is coming. Will P.A. Parenteau be returned to Hartford? That is probably the most obvious, and easiest, move to make. However, Parenteau, while not standing out in his call up, hasn’t necessarily done anything that warrants him being returned to the AHL. Speculation is always fun. Personally, I wouldn’t be surprised to see any of Brian Boyle, Aaron Voros, Christopher Higgins, or Enver Lisin let go.
Remember, the Rangers will need another forward spot when Brandon Dubinsky returns from injury. Speculate away!
With the way the Rangers defense folded last night, and the horribly inconsistent play of Michal Rozsival (and to a lesser extent, Dan Girardi), it has become abundantly clear that the Rangers will require a seventh defenseman to put some pressure on some of the guys who may have become too comfortable with their role on the team. Competition breeds improvement, even if he only plays one game a month.
Finding a defenseman that can not only accept playing a limited role, but can come out of the press box and deliver a decent game is a tough task. The defenseman will have to be a veteran who is used to that kind of treatment. The Rangers have $1.2 million (prorated) in cap space available for the seventh defenseman. But you would have to assume that GM Glen Sather would like to have some room at the trade deadline. So someone at the cap minimum would be preferable.
I was perusing the waiver wire today and saw something interesting. According to TSN, Devils defenseman Cory Murphy has been waived by the club. Murphy, 31, has been a career seventh defenseman, playing anywhere from 25-47 games during his NHL tenure (which began in 2007-2008, after spending six seasons in Europe). He also makes the NHL minimum $500,000 (on the NHL level of his two-way contract, $105,000 in the AHL).
Murphy definitely fills all the requirements of the proverbial seventh defenseman. He’s a veteran (meaning he has a lot of hockey experience), has experience playing in a limited role, and makes the minimum. He wouldn’t cost the Rangers anything, as he was waived. And, the cherry on top, he wouldn’t cost owner James Dolan much if he doesn’t succeed. They can bury him in the minors for 20% of his NHL salary if he isn’t claimed off waivers.
It has become abundantly clear that defenseman Alexei Semenov has played well enough to make the team as a seventh defenseman, but the Rangers appear to be waiting it out before they fully commit to him. GM Glen Sather is simply doing his due diligence as GM and waiting to see which players pop up on waivers. Brad Lukowich ($1.56 million) and Randy Jones ($2.75 million) have both popped up on waivers, but are too expensive. They will both be interesting options on re-entry waivers though. Rob Schremp hit waivers, and was immediately picked up by the Islanders.
Manny Legace and Dan Fritsche were waived by Atlanta. Brian Bochenski, Ryan Craig, and former Ranger Adam Hall were waived by Tampa Bay.
Alexei Semenov is just going to have to wait and see as well. If the Rangers like a name that pops up, expect Semenov to be cut from his tryout.
In a very good move for the Islanders, they have put in a waiver claim for Edmonton forward Rob Schremp. As the last place finisher last year, the Islanders had first dibs on any player placed on waivers. This is a very low risk, high reward move for the Islanders, as Schremp didn’t cost them anything.
Schremp, a first round pick from the 2004 draft, has fallen far. So far, in fact, that he couldn’t even crack the Oilers roster, and was set for yet another season in Springfield. The Islanders should be able to give the kid top line minutes while he tries to find his game again. If he ever does, the combination of him and John Tavares can become lethal.