The Detroit Red Wings are finally going to use the buyout clause that was agreed upon in the latest collective bargaining agreement. Under the terms, teams are allowed two amnesty buyouts that can be used by next summer.
While fans have clamored for Johan Franzen’s ridiculously long contract to be bought out, GM Ken Holland told the media that was "crazy speculation" according to Ansar Khan of Mlive.com. Others want to see Todd Bertuzzi or Mikael Samuelsson amnestied, but that will not happen either.
Colaiacovo joined the team last season in a desperate attempt to make up for the loss of Nick Lidstrom and Brad Stuart. The 30-year-old can be a talented defender, but unfortunately he has struggled to stay healthy during his career.
In his four seasons before coming to Detroit, he missed an average of 17 games a season and never played in more than 67. In Detroit, he only played in six regular-season games. The move will free up $2.5 million in cap space for the team.
That would put them just over $13 million under the cap for this season. This will allow them plenty of room to re-sign their unrestricted free agents, including Damien Brunner, and then possibly go after a better defender.
There may not be any superstar defenders on the market this season, but there are players such as Andrew Ference, Rob Scuderi and Ron Hainsey that could easily slide into the roster and help. The extra cap space may also allow the Red Wings to be more active in the trade market or go after a high-priced goal scorer.