With most NHL contracts now signed, it’s time to take a look at which players may be available on waivers at the beginning of next season.
This was a pretty unscientific approach, as I basically browsed the team pages on CapFriendly looking for players that
A) Could conceivably hit the waiver wire
B) Another team might conceivably have interest in picking up.
That’s it! Obviously, only a tiny fraction of these players will actually get picked up, but here’s the list:
Chris Wagner, C- Wagner has been through the waiver process a few times, and this year might be no different.
Stefan Noeson, RW- The former Sens first rounder hasn’t panned out, but someone may want to give him one more opportunity.
Jarred Tinordi, D- Tinordi will probably hit waivers, but it is questionable whether anyone wants to take a chance on him again.
Joe Morrow, D- A prospect that has seemingly been around forever, someone might still think Morrow has some untapped potential.
Johan Larsson, LW- Larsson may find himself on the outside looking in with Buffalo, especially if they do sign Vesey.
Alex Chiasson, RW- There will be some competition at the bottom of the Calgary forward corps, and Chiasson is a possible casuality.
Linden Vey, C/RW- See Chiasson.
Tyler Wotherspoon, D- Wotherspoon has had some good showings, which may be enough for someone to take a shot.
Matt Tennyson, D- A D with experience who could lose his job to someone young like Haydn Fleury.
Mark McNeill, C/RW- McNeill has 1st round draft pedigree, but not much else. Probably passes through waivers.
David Rundblad, D- Rundblad isn’t a great D-man, but teams seem to keep giving him chances.
Viktor Svedberg, D- Chicago is going to have to waive a couple of D, and Svedberg looks like the most likely candidate to get scooped.
Andreas Martinsen, C- Showed some intriguing jam last year, but may lose spot to youngsters like Rantanen.
Duncan Siemens, D- A former first rounder who hasn’t developed much, but someone might take a chance.
Patrick Wiercioch, D- It might seem odd for a new UFA signing to hit waivers, but it could easily happen for Wiercioch.
Curtis McElhinney, G- If a team needs a goalie for a short-term injury replacement, McElhinney would do the trick.
Adam Cracknell, RW- Cracknell once again faces a training camp battle for an NHL job, like every year for him.
Patrick Eaves, RW- Eaves is facing stiffer competition this year, and a bad camp could cost him his job, although he would probably get picked up.
Curtis McKenzie, LW- McKenzie is a pure energy forward, and those often get snagged on waivers.
Jamie Oleksiak, D- The hulking defenseman is probably about to be passed by more skilled prospects, but his size couldmake him interesting to someone else.
Tomas Jurco, RW/LW-Detroit’s seemingly unending influx of young talent means that some always slip through the cracks. This year, somebody will get squeezed out to waivers, and Jurco is the most tantalizing possibility.
Xavier Ouellet, D- Ouellet probably stays as a 7th D-man, but could get bumped by someone else having a great camp.
Teemu Pulkkinen, LW- Pulkkinen is the more likely between he and Jurco to go to waivers, but also the less exciting.
Iiro Pakarinen, RW-Probably gets waived due to some new youth like Puljujarvi and others joining, but probably an unlikely pickup.
Tyler Pitlick, RW-Pitlick is also caught in a numbers game, but is an even more unlikely pickup, unless a team has a 4th line spot and no other candidates.
Greg McKegg, C- With a few new depth forwards joining the Panthers, McKegg is probably an odd man out, and should be considered for a pickup on name alone.
Logan Shaw, RW- Same deal for Shaw, minus the great name.
Andy Andreoff, C- Somebody has to go in Los Angeles, as there are only so many NHL spots. It will be a dogfight that leaves some quality on the waiver wire, as usual. Andreoff brings a lot of grit.
Michael Latta, C- Latta is very similar to Andreoff, so it’s likely that only one makes the Kings.
Nick Shore, C- LA shows their center depth here. At least one of these guys is going to be up for the taking, and maybe two!
Victor Bartley, D- A D-man with experience is always a likely candidate for pickup from the waiver wire.
Mark Barberio, D- One of Barberio or Pateryn is going to hit waivers. Barberio is probably the more attractive acquisition.
Mike Condon, G- Condon was overwhelmed as an NHL starter last year, but could still be valuable as a backup. Almost certainly has lost his job to Al Montoya.
Stefan Matteau, LW- A former first rounder is always intriguing, and Matteau is still quite young at 22. Probably loses his spot to guys like Andrighetto, Carr, and Danault.
Greg Pateryn, D- See Barberio.
Stefan Elliott, D- A few teams have taken cracks at Elliott lately, and this year could see some more do it.
Austin Watson, LW- You never know when someone is going to want to have another look at a former first round talent. Watson is yet another.
Beau Bennett, RW- Somebody has to go if Pavel Zacha makes it, and it could be Bennett.
Sergei Kalinin,RW- Alternatively, it could be Kalinin.
Keith Kinkaid, G- One of Kinkaid and Wedgewood will be Schneider’s backup, the other will be waived.
Scott Wedgewood, G- See above.
New York Islanders:
Alan Quine, C- Last year’s overtime hero is this year’s waiver bait.
New York Rangers:
Nathan Gerbe, LW- Everyone’s favourite little engine that could probably can’t very much longer.
Nicklas Jensen, RW- Nobody should want Jensen, but I listed almost every other former first rounder, didn’t I?
Dylan McIlrath, D- If the Rangers can’t shed some of their other D contracts, they may end up losing McIlrath. Someone will grab him.
Buddy Robinson, RW- There’s something suspicious about a grown man named buddy, and his spot in the NHL is definitely suspect, too.
Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, LW- Bellemare is actually from France, how exotic!
Nick Cousins, C- Cousins, like Bellemare, is part of a multi-player battle for bottom-line forward spots in Philly. Cousins is the best possible pickup.
Brandon Manning, D- A great pickup if you have any phenoms that need breaking.
Chris VandeVelde, C/LW- VandeVelde is yet another.
Jordan Weal, C- Not all of these guys will hit waivers, but at least one will. After Cousins, Weal is the most intriguing.
Ian Cole, D- Cole could be the casualty if Derrick Pouliot steps up next year.
Stuart Percy, D- Who doesn’t like disappointing former first rounders?
Dylan DeMelo, D- Honestly, San Jose doesn’t really have any waiver candidates. The only way DeMelo hits the waiver wire is if Mirco Mueller really improves out of nowhere, which probably isn’t going to happen.
Landon Ferraro, RW- Ray’s son is a textbook tweener, but some team may want him for a 4th line spot.
Ty Rattie, RW- Rattie hasn’t really panned out, but is still young at 23 and may have hidden offensive upside yet.
Luke Witkowski, D- Tampa is also mostly fine, but let’s include Witkowski on the very longshot that somebody wants him from waivers.
Connor Carrick, D- With Zaitsev coming in, Carrick may be lost to waivers.
Frank Corrado, D- Corrado finally got some playing time with Toronto, but that might have been it for him.
Josh Leivo, LW- Leivo has been quickly overtaken by superior prospects, but may still be of use elsewhere.
Alex Biega, D- There are too many incoming D for the Bulldog to keep his job.
Philip Larsen, D- If Biega stays, it will probably be because Larsen was a flop.
Emerson Etem, LW/RW- Enigmatic Emerson Etem eternally evades expressing excellence. Egads!
Alex Grenier, RW- Grenier is in tough to make the Canucks, but seems ripe for a 4th line chance somewhere else.
Mike Zalewski, C- Zalewski can do a little bit of everything, but it’s not likely he can convince another NHL team to pick him up.
Brad Malone, LW: Washington also looks pretty waiver proof, but let’s put Brad Malone here so they don’t feel left out. He’s pretty good at getting beat up!
Joel Armia, RW- Seems like he’s been around forever, but only 23. Might lose a spot with Laine incoming.
Quinton Howden, LW- Still young, and a part of the infamous Keith Ballard deal.
Michael Hutchinson, G- Hutchinson could be the victim of team stubbornness if they hang on to Pavelec.
JC Lipon, RW- Maybe a longshot to be picked up, but stranger things have happened.