It was announced today that the New York Rangers placed Matt Beleskey on waivers.
Kempe (ARIZ) & Beleskey (NYR) on waivers— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) October 24, 2018
Beleskey being on waivers means he’s healthy enough to return from injury, after he sustained a separated shoulder in a preseason fight against Eric Gryba of the New Jersey Devils. That injury cut a training camp short, in which he was vying for a roster spot after spending last season with the Boston Bruins’ AHL club, before being traded to the Rangers and playing in Hartford.
Over the summer, Mike listed Beleskey as a player with a lot to gain in head coach David Quinn’s first training camp:
On paper, Beleskey looks like he should be a great fit for Quinn. He is a maximum effort guy who plays hard, knows how to take the body, and was a solid depth forward before the 2017-18 season. He’s also the second most experienced skater on the roster, trailing only Marc Staal in career NHL games.
Ultimately, Beleskey’s fate will come down to whether or not he can prove he is more valuable to have in the bottom-six than a younger player. In other words, the odds are not exactly in his favor. However, the Rangers are currently focused more on philosophy, leadership, and development than they are on winning games. That should give Beleskey a real chance at impressing Quinn and making the roster.
Had he stayed healthy, he very well could have at least became the team’s 13th forward at the NHL level.
Beleskey was a part of the return for Rick Nash last February. The Bruins retained 50 percent of his $3.8 million cap hit in the deal, which expires in 2020. At the NHL level, his cap hit is $1.9 million. If he clears waivers and returns to Hartford, $875,000 will count against the Rangers’ cap.
Matt Beleskey's cap hit with the #Rangers this season is $1.9M. Bruins retained 50% of his salary in the trade that brought him to NY last season.— CapFriendly (@CapFriendly) October 24, 2018
If Beleskey clears, and is assigned to the minors, he'll continue to count against the Rangers cap at a reduced cap hit of $875K. https://t.co/mpIkOUgL8G