Major surprise on the waivers: The real reason behind Jakub Vrana's waiver submission is known and Kent Hughes has to look into it

BY MARCO    JANUARY 4, 2023  (10:33)
The Detroit Red Wings took the hockey world by surprise yesterday when they announced that they had placed forward Jakub Vrana on waivers.

Obviously, to see a player of his caliber being available for free to all teams is quite surprising, which has fueled many questions about the player himself.

Remember that he missed several games this season because he was on the NHL's player assistance program.

Due to this and the fact that he found himself on waivers a few days after his release, many fans wondered if there was a "hidden vice", but TSN's Chris Johnston just offered the answer.


"Chris Johnston on Insider Trading says the reason the Red Wings placed forward Jakub Vrana on waivers is because they are facing pressure with their lineup (a surplus) with forward Robby Fabbri returning to the lineup and forward Tyler Bertuzzi coming back soon.

Vrana is perfectly healthy right now and is ready to play right now." - NHL Watcher

So, from what we can gather from Johnston's information, it's that the Red Wings would have simply placed Vrana on waivers, so they could make room in their lineup. Basically, they preferred Fabbri and Bertuzzi to Vrana.

But Vrana is ready to play and he is ready to perform.

Let's face it, this is a solid opportunity for Kent Hughes and his counterparts to add a 26 year old player, with the potential to put up 60+ points per season, when healthy, for free.

In his case, the only "catch" is that he's carrying a $5.25M annual salary for another season next year. However, he is only 26 years old. If he returns to his former form and scores 40 or 50 points next season, just before the trade deadline, he could become another great asset management for the Habs, as Sean Monahan is now.

Simply by taking advantage of buy low and sell high opportunities, Hughes could potentially benefit from another first round pick next year for the Czech-born player, if he returns to being the same player he was last year. Worst case scenario, the Habs would just have to sell off their final year of his contract.

If that was your decision, would you claim Vrana? He could develop into a solid top-6 winger who is only 26 years old. It might be tempting to replace an Evgenii Dadonov or a Joel Armia, with Vrana. He's also a big upgrade on Mike Hoffman offensively.

Please note that the Montreal Canadiens currently hold the sixth right (out of 32) to claim players on the waivers.


Credit: HabsetLNH.com
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