Feb. 12: Stevens has cleared unconditional waivers and will have his contract terminated, per Johnston.
Stevens’ pending contract termination is likely mutual and not for off-ice reasons. The 27-year-old has no NHL experience and has been disappointing with AHL Grand Rapids this season, scoring three goals and 11 points in 31 games.
A fifth-round pick of the Blues in 2016, Stevens was an offensive force in collegiate play with Northeastern University but hasn’t been able to translate his scoring to the pro level with much consistency. He developed into a decent top-nine AHL contributor after turning pro with the Blues’ AHL affiliate in 2018, but after failing to make much progress up the depth chart, he was dealt to the Wild in a minor-league prospect swap in Dec. 2021.
Stevens then posted only seven points in 33 games to close out the 2021-22 campaign with AHL Iowa, becoming a Group VI UFA that summer with the Wild opting not to re-sign him. He received no other NHL offers and signed a minor-league deal with the Devils’ AHL affiliate in Utica for 2022-23.
It proved to be the right choice for Stevens, who looked to get his confidence back with a career-high 15 goals and 33 points in only 48 games. That performance got him another NHL contract with Detroit last summer, who signed him to a one-year, two-way deal worth $775K in the NHL and $150K in the NHL.
With his production and ice time continuing to trail off, however, both sides would like a fresh start. If Stevens clears waivers, he will become an unrestricted free agent on Monday and can sign with any other NHL club.