Carolina’s second buyout window opened up yesterday but while some wondered if they might take advantage of that to buy out the final year of Jake Gardiner’s deal, Hurricanes GM Don Waddell told Chip Alexander of the Raleigh News & Observer that they won’t do so. Gardiner missed all of last season due to hip and back surgeries and cleared waivers the year before that so the opportunity to clear a big chunk of his $4.05MM AAV off their books had to be considered. However, with Max Pacioretty set to miss at least the first half of the season due to a torn Achilles, the need to free up short-term cap space isn’t as high so Gardiner will now try to earn a spot at the back of Carolina’s roster next month in training camp.
More from the Metropolitan:
- Flyers goaltender Ivan Fedotov’s hearing in Russia has been pushed to September 20th, relays Sam Carchidi of Philadelphia Hockey Now. He was arrested last month on suspicion of evading military service. The 25-year-old signed a one-year deal with Philadelphia back in May with the expectation that he’d become their second goaltender following a dominant playoff performance with CSKA Moscow of the KHL but now, they won’t have him when training camp gets underway next month.
- There’s no firm timeline for when (or if) Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom might return next season after undergoing hip resurfacing surgery but Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic feels (subscription link) that the team is planning to be without the 34-year-old for the entire regular season with a small hope that he could be ready in the playoffs. Backstrom has three years left on his deal with a $9.2MM AAV and will clearly be eligible to go on LTIR. However, if the Caps feel that he won’t return at all during the season, that would give them more flexibility to add to their roster as they wouldn’t have to have enough freed up to accommodate his return. Speculatively, this feels like a situation where they’ll want to wait until closer to midseason and then reassess things heading towards the trade deadline.