June 30 2010 10:43AM
According to a tweet by Kevin Allen of USA today, Nigel Dawes has been placed on waivers by the Calgary Flames. Unlike Kotalik, Dawes has been placed on unconditional waivers according to Bob McKenzie, meaning he is eligible to be bought out.
Aside from the potential longjam at LW should Higgins get re-signed (Hagman, Dawes, Higgins, Glencross), I can't fathom why the Flames would want to rid themselves of Dawes' contract. At 850k, he was a good bet to outperform his cap hit, which is something he most definitely did do last year. He had periods of low productivity (just like everyone else on the team) but spent lots of time taking on tough minutes with Langkow and Bourque and was able to hold his head above water. He finished in the black in terms of possession and scoring chances to end the year and was the most efficient producer of points on the power play - moreso than Jarome Iginla. While not big, he was decent in puck battles, had acceptable vision in the offensive zone and a better than average shot. Only three players managed more than Dawes' 14 goals on the Flames last year and they all appeared in more games.
If Dawes goes away, either due to a claim or a buy-out, the Flames free up some roster space on the left side. What they lose, however, is a young, decent player on a high value contract. This is the kind of guy the Flames should be trying to acquire and keep, not get rid of.