Mason Raymond’s time in Calgary appears to be officially over. Well, it effectively has been since Feb. 3, when he was waived for the second time in the 2015-16 season and subsequently sent down to the Stockton Heat – but now, it’s over.
Raymond (CAL) and Nystrom (NASH) to be bought out. Stuart clears.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) June 29, 2016
This marks the third time in one calendar year Raymond has been on waivers. It’s over.
On July 1, 2014, Brad Treliving was at the general manager’s helm for his first free agency opening period. He didn’t have the best day, just as he didn’t have the best draft the week before; on that day, the Flames signed Raymond, Jonas Hiller, and Deryk Engelland all to rather large contracts. Hiller’s officially expires in two days’ time, while Engelland and Raymond still have another year each on theirs.
Or, in Raymond’s case, had. His three-year deal, worth an annual average value of $3.15 million, is being cut short a year early. The Flames will save $2.1 million on the cap this year – enough to re-sign Joe Colborne? – and will have $1.05 million in dead cap for the 2017-18 season.
This is the season the Flames need to save cap, though. With too many awful contracts all set to expire after this season, and taking up valuable cap space throughout it, Calgary was always going to have to get creative. Utilizing the buyout window was one way of doing it.
Keep in mind, the Flames may not be done yet. Because Dennis Wideman has a no movement clause, he doesn’t have to be waived before being bought out. The Flames can simply do that before the buyout period expires at 3 p.m. MT June 30.
Buying out Wideman would save the Flames an additional $4 million on their cap this season, while costing them another $2 million for 2017-18. The difference between Wideman and Raymond, though? Wideman still has some NHL value – Raymond’s was clearly gone.
As for Ladislav Smid? As an injured player, he has to agree to be bought out, and it doesn’t look like that’s happening. He has one year at $3.5 million remaining on his deal.