Report: Sheldon Souray On Re-Entry Waivers

Jonathan Willis
February 19 2011 10:19AM

As per Nick Kypreos, the Edmonton Oilers have finally taken the next inevitable step in the Sheldon Souray saga: they’ve placed the veteran defenceman on re-entry waivers.

For other clubs, this means that the total cost to acquire Sheldon Souray is as follows:

  • $2.25 million in actual salary pro-rated over the rest of this season, as well as $2.25 million in actual salary next season
  • $2.7 million in cap hit pro-rated over the rest of this season, as well as a $2.7 million cap hit next season

If claimed, the Oilers will pay the identical amount in salary and cap hit so that Souray can play for another NHL club.

Despite the doom and gloom we’ve heard this season about Souray – that he hasn’t been placed on re-entry waivers prior to this because Steve Tambellini feared he would clear, that the New York Rangers scouted him and didn’t want him – I would be surprised if he cleared. The fact is, as Lowetide has said time and again (and pointed out in his article this morning) that NHL defenceman have exceptional value at deadline day. Generally, they cost a lot.  Interestingly, Tambellini has decided to gamble here that someone will be interested - according to Bob McKenzie, a deal has not been pre-arranged.

In this case, for the league’s other 29 teams there is the possibility of acquiring a top-four defenceman (and the certainty of acquiring at the very least a power play specialist) for no assets. Teams looking to make noise in the playoffs are sure to value that. The difference between Souray’s cap hit and actual salary is also bound to appeal to smaller market teams – they can make up part of their obligation to get to the salary floor without paying all the money to get there.

I remember these sorts of deals well from back when the Oilers were a small budget team that always struggled to stay competitive. The fact is that teams hard up for cash and talent sometimes need to take chances, and one has to think Souray will appeal to at least one of them. The fact they need to take on an additional year is certainly somewhat worrisome, but it is a calculated risk, and the potential for gain is there.

Either way, this will mark a turning point. If Souray is claimed, this ugly story comes to an end, at the cost of some cap hit and a few million from the Oilers. If Souray goes unclaimed, it will be abundantly clear to everyone (not least of all to Souray himself) that his stature has fallen to the point where the player needs to move heaven and earth to get himself back to the National Hockey League.

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Jonathan Willis is Managing Editor of the Nation Network. He also currently writes for the Edmonton Journal's Cult of Hockey, Grantland, and Hockey Prospectus. His work has appeared at theScore, ESPN and Puck Daddy. He was previously founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue. Contact him at jonathan (dot) willis (at) live (dot) ca.
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#51 Chris.
February 20 2011, 11:56AM
Trash it!
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Archaeologuy wrote:

I hope he gets claimed by Tampa and Souray AND Roli win the cup.

I for one liked Souray and thought that no one even tried to investigate his claims about being pushed into playing hurt.

That Sh*t doesnt fly with me and I doubt anyone here would stand for their boss trying to force them into working under dangerous conditions.

He didnt insult the fans or the city, he called out the same crap management that created this lottery bound train wreck. Whatever.

Love your take Arch. Props. If this really is a first class organization that cares for it's people; why is there always so much collateral damage?

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#52 I tried it at home
February 20 2011, 12:59PM
Trash it!
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Chris. wrote:

Love your take Arch. Props. If this really is a first class organization that cares for it's people; why is there always so much collateral damage?

to quote stevezie (gotta spread the props around); I concur!

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#53 Archaeologuy
February 20 2011, 03:54PM
Trash it!
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Thanks.

I just never got the hate and vitriol spewed Souray's direction.

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#54 HOFFFF
February 21 2011, 11:08AM
Trash it!
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Archaeologuy wrote:

Thanks.

I just never got the hate and vitriol spewed Souray's direction.

Arch, maybe his accusations were correct, a bit embellished or outright lies, do you really believe the way Souray handled that through the media was the correct way? Maybe they did push him to play, most players want to be out there ready or not. He should be thankful the Oilers valued him that much, and needed him that much. Now he's not needed by anyone or valued at anything. I was that egomaniacs biggest fan. Now I think he got what he deserves.

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