Yesterday, the Dallas Stars announced they had placed Patrik Nemeth on waivers with the intention to send him to the Texas Stars of the AHL. Not exactly a surprising move, given the number of defensemen the Stars had in Dallas on contracts or, in Julius Honka’s case, were too good not to make the 23-man roster.
Nemeth never seemed to separate himself enough from Greg Pateryn, Stephen Johns, Jamie Oleksiak, et. al. to be in the conversation for making the NHL roster this season. He needed to get playing time to improve, and the only way he was going to get that in Dallas was to be sent down to the AHL.
Putting him on waivers was always going to be a risky prospect, though the timing of waiving him right before the start of the season should have decreased his chances of not clearing waivers, given that players claimed have to remain on the NHL roster of the claimant.
But there are teams that need defense even this close to the season, and one of them took a chance on claiming Nemeth this morning.
The Colorado Avalanche expect Nemeth to come in and play in their top four immediately.
Let that sink in for just a minute. Nemeth, who has had spotty appearances in NHL games since the sliced tendon that claimed most of his 2014-2015 season, is expected to slot into the lineup, and in a prime pairing at that. That’s how desperate the Avs’ situation on the blueline is.
It’s the kind of fresh start Nemeth likely needs. Hopefully, this will allow him to return to the steady defender the Stars saw prior to his injury. Us at DBD and the Stars organization as a whole will always remember Nemeth with fondness because of that magical Calder Cup winning goal back in 2014, and with that memory we wish Nemeth the best of luck in his future. (Just not against Dallas, please and thank you!)
Forward Curtis McKenzie, who was also placed on waivers by the Dallas Stars yesterday, cleared and is expected to be assigned to the Texas Stars.