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Islanders cut roster down: Two vets sent to waivers

UNIONDALE, NEW YORK - MARCH 18: Thomas Hickey #34 of the New York Islanders skates in warm-ups prior to the game against the Philadelphia Flyers at the Nassau Coliseum on March 18, 2021 in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
UNIONDALE, NEW YORK - MARCH 18: Thomas Hickey #34 of the New York Islanders skates in warm-ups prior to the game against the Philadelphia Flyers at the Nassau Coliseum on March 18, 2021 in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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The roster cuts keep coming for the New York Islanders. With only one preseason game remaining (Saturday night against the New York Rangers), and with final rosters due on Monday at 5 PM EST, decisions need to be made ASAP.

Today, two more names were cut from the roster or at the very least sent through waivers. Both are veteran players. And while one was expected to go through waivers, it wasn’t the case for the other name.

Two New York Islanders vets go through waivers

On Saturday, the two Isles vets were on the list of players going through waivers; Thomas Hickey and Richard Panik.

You probably weren’t surprised to see Thomas Hickey pass through waivers. By all accounts, Hickey was the ninth defenseman on the depth chart. Guys like Erik Gustafsson and Sebastian Aho likely leapfrogged him. We also have to factor in Hickey’s $2.5 million cap hit. By going through waivers, and passing, the Isles clear $1.125 million on the cap.

Even if Hickey was up higher on the depth chart, his cap hit would have surely placed him in the AHL this year.

Richard Panik is another story though.

Brought in from the Detroit Red Wings trade, Panik has been a serviceable extra for the team. He fits the mold the Isles like for their bottom six players and he’s cheap on the cap ($1.375 million cap hit). I figured he’d say on as an extra skater.

Now, sending him through waivers doesn’t mean that can’t happen of course. As we saw last year, a player doesn’t have to constantly go through waivers when they go up and down. The CBA (article 13.2[b]) states that a player doesn’t have to go through waivers again if:

  • The player hasn’t been on an NHL roster for 30 days, or;
  • The player hasn’t played in 10 or more NHL games.

I would imagine both go unclaimed and we’ll see what happens from there as Lou Lamoriello shapes his roster for the Monday roster submission deadline.

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