With players needing to be placed on waivers before noon tomorrow to comply with Monday’s 3 PM roster deadline, the first domino finally fell for the Devils when they traded quasi-enforcer Krys Barch and a 2015 7th rounder to Florida for a 2014 6th rounder and AHL player Scott Timmins. Barch had no points and 44 PIM’s in 22 games last year in New Jersey while Timmins has had one goal and a -10 in 24 career NHL games over the last two seasons for the Panthers. While Florida has been adding reinforcements to their roster over the last few days – signing Tim Thomas, Brad Boyes and Tom Gilbert – the Devils were just trying to create some room on the big-league roster.
Without Barch, the Devils still have fourteen one-way contracts up front plus Stephen Gionta and his two-way deal. Not to mention eight defensemen are still on the roster, with 22-year old Alexander Urbom waiver-eligible. Unless we keep eight defensemen (which would again be a disaster), there’ll either have to be a move there or we’ll have to risk losing Urbom to waivers. New Jersey could also pull a bait-and-switch – sending Adam Larsson down for a day and then recalling him in favor of Urbom when teams’ rosters are set and he’d be least likely to get claimed. GM Lou Lamoriello used this trick to get Bobby Butler through waivers at the start of the season last year, although teams might be wiser to the maneuver now.
Either way, we’ll see what the next domino is by tomorrow or Monday.