The Sharks announced that they have placed defenseman Paul Martin on waivers for the purposes of buying out the remainder of his contract. GM Doug Wilson issued the following statement regarding the move:
“Paul Martin has been the utmost professional on and off the ice during his three years in San Jose. His leadership, character and on-ice contributions have been essential to our success and in reaching the 2016 Stanley Cup Final. The impact he has had on our organization, his teammates and many of our younger players will be felt for many years to come.”
The 37-year-old has spent the past three seasons in San Jose and played an important role in their trip to the Stanley Cup Final back in 2015-16. However, his effectiveness and role were reduced in recent years to the point where he cleared waivers this past season and played in more games in the minors (18) during the regular season than he did in the NHL (14). Martin was brought back up late in the season and while he played a sparing role on the third pairing, he did get into seven postseason contests but even with that, being bought out was still the expected outcome.
Martin had one year left on his deal with a $4.85MM cap hit and a $4.25MM salary. Assuming he clears waivers on Saturday, the Sharks will instead carry a $2.017MM cap charge in 2018-19 and a $1.417MM hit in 2019-20. The roughly $2.8MM in savings will give San Jose nearly $19MM in cap room to play with this summer which will make them a team to watch for in free agency which kicks off next Sunday.