Which Players Can Clear Waivers? (Brule Update)

CapGeek.com has quickly turned itself into the Bible of player contract and salary cap calculation questions. In addition to listing the length and dollars of players contracts, and calculating team numbers, CapGeek does some other cool things: including calculating waiver exemptions.

The question has come up a few times which Oilers prospects can clear waivers this fall, so I ran all of the conceivable bubble players who might still be young enough to qualify. Sam Gagner, oddly enough, can still clear waivers until he plays in five more NHL games. Of course he won’t be demoted to the minors; I include this fact only as a curiosity and an excuse to lead with the video above.

Waiver Protected

  • Taylor Chorney: 2 years / 78 games played
  • Devan Dubnyk: 1 year / 80 games played
  • Colin McDonald: 1 year / 60 games played
  • Ryan O’Marra: 1 year / 160 games played
  • Theo Peckham: 1 year / 144 games played

Not a lot of surprises here, and only two real concerns in the immediate future: Devan Dubnyk and Theo Peckham, both of whom will be waiver eligible for 2010-11. I expect that Peckham will carve out a role for himself on the third pairing this year (regardless of whether he’s with this team when they break camp or not). That just leaves Dubnyk, who must be considered the most promising young goaltender in the Oilers’ system. After this season, he needs to be brought up or the team risks exposing him – which makes the continued devotion to Jeff Deslauriers a little bit perplexing, since his is the only spot that might be available.

Waiver Eligible

  • Gilbert Brule: 3 year exemption exceeded
  • Jeff Drouin-Deslauriers: 4 year exemption exceeded
  • Jean-Francois Jacques: 3 year exemption exceeded
  • Ryan Potulny: 3 year exemption exceeded
  • Liam Reddox: 3 year exemption exceeded
  • Rob Schremp: 4 year exemption exceeded
  • Ryan Stone: 3 year exemption exceeded

Some of these guys will be exposed; my guess is the bottom four names on the list. Potulny, Schremp or Reddox might garner some attention from someone, but I would bet that all three clear waivers – and if any of them don’t it isn’t a big loss; Potulny and Schremp are offensive prospects who haven’t been able to crack the NHL roster, while Reddox is a fairly run of the mill bottom-sixer.

UPDATE:  Gilbert Brule’s name has come up (again) since the team apparently believes he is still protected from waivers.  Here’s the way I understand it:

Brule’s still 3 games short of the 160-game requirement, but he first played 11+ games in 2006-07 (as a 19-year old) and his three seasons of eligibility (2006-07, 2007-08, 2008-09) should be up now.

He would have an additional year of protection had he not played in the NHL at age 19, but article 13.4 of the CBA seems to make it pretty clear cut that he’s waiver eligible.

The only possible way around this would be based on his birthday – Brule was born January 1, and the age calculation begins on January 1. There’s some room for argument there, but I believe the NHL would interpret the calculation as January 1st inclusive rather than exclusive, leaving Brule waiver eligible.

  • Hippy

    My favourite Gagner shootout attempt was against Dom Hasek. A classic showdown: 18-year-old greenhorn against 42-year-old greybeard. By then Gagner had potted a few and the Dominator obviously had watched the videos, cuz after Sam finished making his 11 moves and pulled the puck to his forehand there was Hasek calmly waiting for him. Dom never bit even the tiniest bit, and made his own move at precisely the right instant to make the save look easy.

  • Hippy

    Sorry Jason, I didn't mean to sound patronizing. I thought you had got the 'he was already waived' answer in an in person interview, where you would've followed up immediately asking about the CBA.

    If they're not responding to your calls and emails, there's nothing you can do, I suppose.

    Thanks for looking at this. You may have a 'management screws up' story like the Tallon story or the Philly-Pronger deal on your hands. Interesting stuff.

  • Hippy

    Jason Gregor wrote:

    I’ve spoke with both the Oilers and Brule’s camp and they agree he doesn’t have to clear waivers. The supposed reason is that he cleared waivers last year. I can’t find anything that states he was waiver eligible last year, so I don’t see how he would have had to but both camps agree at this point.
    That is why Brule has yet to sign, ideally he doesn’t want a two-way deal because that makes it much easier to send him down before the season.
    Everything says he should have to have clear waivers now, but both his agent and the Oilers have said he doesn’t. Strange.

    The CBA is written as archaic as possible, much like Nostradamus' writings. So much legalese that it takes a lawyer to understand. But that explanation makes even less sense to me.

    Firstly because I agree that it makes no sense he would even have to clear waivers last year. TSN's list of transactions for him also doesn't mention him clearing waivers at any point. If you look at a guy like Potulny, you'll see he had to go through waivers to be assigned to Springfield last year.

    Secondly, like Jonathan Willis, I only play a capologist on TV. I haven't got the ego enough to think I'd know any better than Rick Olcyk. However, the comment about waiving him successfully last season baffles me as to how that affects this season. Maybe it has something to do with them intending to send him down before the season really starts. That would be my only guess. But I would think that once the season is underway that would change…?

    It's too bad we don't have access to a CBA mastermind on a full-time basis to drill with questions. Hell, I would love to pick Olcyk's brain even for an hour just to get clarification on a few parts of the CBA.

  • Hippy

    The reason Brule doesn't have to clear waivers is because of Article 13.2 (b) "the Player has not played in ten (10) or more NHL Games cumulative since Regular Waivers on him were last cleared, and more than thirty (30) days cumulative on an NHL roster have not passed since Regular Waivers on him were last cleared."

    He was recalled on Dec 5/08, played 2 games, was assigned and cleared waivers on Dec 12/08, recalled Dec 31/08, played 9 games, assigned Jan 21/09 without having to clear waivers as per Article 13.2(b).