Nov 19: Bailey has cleared waivers and will be assigned to the AHL.
Nov 18: The Vancouver Canucks have placed Justin Bailey on waivers, along with designating him for assignment. That means they clear the roster spot immediately, but Bailey will have to be assigned to the AHL should he clear tomorrow.
Now 26, Bailey has played in ten games this season for the Canucks but does not yet have a point. Originally a second-round pick by the Buffalo Sabres, to this point in his career he hasn’t been able to establish himself as a full-time NHL option. In the minor leagues Bailey is a top-level scorer, with 28 goals in 53 games during the 2019-20 campaign, but so far that hasn’t translated to the higher level. In his 78 career games, the 6’4″ forward has just five goals and nine points.
With Tyler Motte back in action, the team was carrying 14 forwards and were pushed right up against the cap. Sending Bailey’s league-minimum contract down would open up a roster spot and some cap space, perhaps letting them bring Jack Rathbone back up to join the defensive group.
There’s a chance he could be claimed, but with so many other forwards passing through waivers without a problem, Bailey seems like a safe bet to be assigned to Abbotsford tomorrow.