Jan 30: Balcers has cleared waivers and can now be officially assigned to the AHL.
Jan 29: The Tampa Bay Lightning have placed forward Rudolfs Balcers on waivers, according to CapFriendly. The move comes after Balcers finished his conditioning loan to the Lightning’s AHL affiliate, the Syracuse Crunch, today.
Balcers, 25, hasn’t played in an NHL game since November as he was dealing with an upper-body injury. This is not his first time on waivers this season, as he was claimed off of waivers by the Lightning in November.
Balcers’ injury means that he has only played in three games for the Lightning, despite being on their roster for quite a bit of time. In those three games, Balcers scored a goal and averaged just under seven minutes of ice time per game. His full-season total production is five points through 17 games, which is a decline from the rate he scored last year.
If he ends up clearing waivers, Balcers will head back to the AHL level in Syracuse where he’s had success. Balcers has 117 points in 149 career AHL games, so he should be able to help the Crunch’s scoring attack should he end up there.
Otherwise, teams across the league will have a chance to reinforce their group of forwards with Balcers should they want to place a claim. Balcers is available at a league-minimum price, and has 170 NHL games on his resume.
I guess Panthers can claim him and assign to the minors right ahead…