Red Wings Buy Out Stephen Weiss

What a fun week for Stephen Weiss discussion in Red Wings land, huh? At first, the news that Pavel Datsyuk's ankle surgery to repair tendon damage done last season while blocking a shot came out. With Datsyuk's return in October questionable, we got news that Weiss could escape the buyout that might come after the Wings failed to move him before the draft. Then we got to June 29th's waiver deadline and learned that Weiss wouldn't have to be placed on Waivers by that day because of the special 5-hour waiver period on June 30th (which is the buyout deadline). Today we got reminded that Weiss' no movement clause precluded the need to place Weiss on waivers before buying him out.

So here we are at 5pm EST on the buyout deadline and at the very last minute have received word that Weiss has indeed been bought out.

With $15M left on the three years in Weiss' deal, the club will owe him $10M for the buyout spread over six years. Thanks to different signing bonuses, the cap hit will change over the six years. Here's the breakdown, courtesy of General Fanager

Year Contract Salary Due Contract Cap Hit Buyout Cost Buyout Savings Buyout Cap Hit
2015-16 $5,500,000 $4,900,000 $1,666,666 $3,833,334 $1,066,666
2016-17 $5,500,000 $4,900,000 $1,666,666 $3,833,334 $1,066,666
2017-18 $4,000,000 $4,900,000 $1,666,666 $2,333,334 $2,566,666
2018-19 $0 $0 $1,666,666 -$1,666,666 $1,666,666
2019-20 $0 $0 $1,666,666 -$1,666,666 $1,666,666
2020-21 $0 $0 $1,666,666 -$1,666,666 $1,666,666

This buyout will give the Red Wings approximately $14.4M in cap space with a need to sign five more forwards to hit the 23-man roster. They will still have Gustav Nyquist, Teemu Pulkkinen, Landon Ferraro, and Tomas Jurco as RFAs to re-sign to fill those spots, as well as having other players on ELCs to bring up for room.

I think this was a good move. Weiss never really worked and he didn't fit as the center he was signed to be. The Red Wings were not going to have a spot for him playing center behind Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Riley Sheahan, Luke Glendening, and possibly Dylan Larkin (not to mention half a dozen other Red Wings who can play the pivot).