Anders Nilsson has been perfect thus far in the preseason. He has stopped all 53 shots he’s faced; 17 vs. Calgary in half a game, 25 in a 60-minute effort vs. Minnesota and 11 last night against Arizona.
He signed a one-way contract worth $1 million earlier this summer, but he does not have to clear waivers to be sent down and that might be the reason he starts the season in Bakersfield.
Up until last night I incorrectly thought he needed to clear waivers, but that is not the case.
NHL forwards and defencemen are waivers eligible after their entry level contract is up. Essentially after the play three years of pro, or if they’ve already played 160 NHL games.
Goalies are different. They are waiver exempt until after their fourth season. I thought Nilsson needed waivers because he played three years of AHL/NHL experience and then played pro last year in the KHL.
Incorrect. This is his fourth season on an NHL contract, and he has played fewer than 80 games, so he is waiver exempt.
This window allows the Oilers to send him to the AHL and keep Ben Scrivens in the NHL, without the risk of losing one to a waiver claim.
Scrivens has played well also, but I’d say Nilsson has outplayed him, albeit only in preseason action vs. watered down lineups.
I wonder if Nilsson’s free pass to the AHL could end up being the deciding factor in where he starts the season.
***I’ve also had many inquire about Nilsson bolting to Europe if he is reassigned. He does not have an out clause. He will play in the AHL or NHL all season.***
OILERS MAKE CUTS…
Darnell Nurse, Mitch Moroz, Iiro Pakarinen and Martin Gernat were reassigned to Bakersfield this morning. I thought Nurse might get one more preseason game, but it was clear he wasn’t going to start the season in Edmonton, so the Oilers decided to get him there earlier.
Smart move. I think most people see the potential of Nurse, and we all expect him to be a regular NHL in the future, but allowing him to develop his skills in the AHL makes sense.
I’d be stunned if we don’t see Nurse back in Edmonton at some point this season.
THE KENTWOOD FORD HOCKEY DRAFT
Sign up for the Kentwood Ford Hockey Draft for FREE and you could win a two-year lease on a 2016 Ford Escape. Enter your team today at www.kentwoodhockey.com.
Recently by Jason Gregor: