Rangers captain Chris Drury was not placed on waivers today, opening up a Pandora’s box of possibilities.
It could signal that his deteriorating knee is preventing him from playing and therefore cannot be bought out in this two-week window, which expires on Thursday. That has been reported previously. Drury, who has a $7 million cap hit, would remain on the summer salary cap, which can be 10 percent over the regular season cap, and be placed on long-term injury reserve (LTIR) in September during camp.
I still believe he will be bought out at some point.
One question that needs to be clarified, is when both Drury and the league need to be notified of the buyout. Apparently, Thursday at 5 p.m. is the notification deadline for the NHL.
According to the CBA, if a club wants to buy out a player with a no-move clause, such as Drury, he must be notified 24 hours before being placed on waivers, and has the choice to reject. Drury could reject waivers. So Drury might not be on 24-hour unconditional waivers tomorrow, and a buyout could proceed.
Drury’s agent did not respond to e-mails asking to clear up the situation and the Rangers are not commenting.
The Rangers could still attempt to trade Drury to a team trying to reach the cap floor (Colorado, Florida, Phoenix?) but the veteran center would have to waive his no-trade for that.
There is another buyout window, in August, after the arbitration hearings, should any eligible Ranger file for arbitration before July 5. The team and the player could settle before a hearing however, and Drury could be bought out in that window. However, I get the sense this will be resolved by them.