Coming out of the 2004-05 lockout, one of the provisions of the new CBA was that a team had six days that July to clear salary cap space with what was called a "compliance buyout". Under this provision, a team could pay a player the remainder of his guaranteed salary, but would eliminate him from their roster and the buyout would not count against their cap. The additional provision was that a team was not allowed to re-acquire (through any means) that player for a year.
With the Wings finding themselves a sudden need to nearly halve their salary at the time, Detroit used that buyout provision on winger Darren McCarty, Ray Whitney, and the ever-so-helpful Derian Hatcher.
While I've yet to hear that the NHL and NHLPA have seriously discussed doing this again, it's a possible answer to teams' cap problems if the salary cap does have to be rolled back. However, a team wouldn't necessarily have to be in cap trouble to utilize a buyout. They could possible just have too many players and getting one of them off their roster might help open up some flexibility.
So the question is: If Detroit had the ability to buy out only one player, would you use it and on whom?
On the question of why Detroit would buy somebody out right now rather than either trading him, putting him on waivers, or just planning to bury him in the minors, the answer is voting for Detroit not to use it. There are reasons for using one that allow Detroit to do right by a player in ways that waivers and burying in the minors do not and there are reasons why some players can't simply be traded. This consideration is built into the poll though.
For the sake of the poll, I'm not going to load every player on the roster (although thanks to the "other" option, you'll be able to vote for anybody you want). The players I've left off are either new additions as of this summer, entry-level players, or those making less than $1M. Patrick Eaves is a special case, as his injury status makes the move questionable, but it's all just a mental exercise anyway.
Like I said though, feel free to use the "other" vote and put your comment below as to why you think the person for whom you voted would be a good candidate for a compliance buyout.
To clarify the rules: This is a buyout used right now. For the sake of argument, pretend that Detroit has to make this decision before August 1st.