The New Jersey Devils have placed F Rostislav Olesz on waivers today. If he clears waivers on Thursday at noon, he can be sent down to Albany.
Could this move be a way to empty a roster spot for a player on IR like Ryane Clowe or Bryce Salvador? If the Devils do indeed keep 8 defensemen in Jersey that is a pretty bold move since you are cutting out an extra forward in doing so.
Patrik Elias and Travis Zajac did not play on Sunday. Peter Harrold, Bryce Salvador, and Ryane Clowe remain on injured reserve.
It is unknown right now if Jon Merrill will go to IR but he was not available after the game and he needed “quite a few stitches.”
If Merrill takes the trip to the IR, that would revert the defense to Adam Larsson, Eric Gelinas, Andy Greene, Marek Zidlicky, Anton Volchenkov. The Devils could be ready to activate Bryce Salvador off of IR but that seems unlikely. Ryane Clowe has not been skating as of late either.
Peter Harrold should be able to come off of IR tomorrow as his placement was retroactive to October 28th.
If Harrold returns, that gives the Devils 6 defenders if Merrill goes on IR. They might be holding off on putting Merrill on IR until they know Harrold can come back.
Also, when all 8 NHL defensemen are healthy, that means that Lou Lamoriello has decisions to make at D. It doesn’t make sense to hold 8 defenders because guys like Merrill and Gelinas can get more playing time in Albany if they don’t start in New Jersey.
One also has to wonder if Lamoriello is ready to bring up a forward from Albany. Joe Whitney has played in 11 games and has 5 goals and 6 assists in Albany while Reid Boucher has played in 11 and has 3 goals and 5 assists. Personally, I have wanted to see Whitney more than Boucher because I feel that Boucher could use more time in the AHL.
Time will tell where the Devils move from here.