Agent Dan Milstein is tweeting out today that the Toronto Maple Leafs defenceman Alexey Marchenko is on waivers. That’s all he’s saying. It’s not clear who is making the media statement tomorrow either.
Alexey Marchenko of the Toronto Maple Leafs was put on NHL waivers today. Media statement tomorrow at 1pm EST.— Dan Milstein-Hockey (@HockeyAgent1) August 14, 2017
So which kind of waivers?
First, cast your mind back to February, and you’ll recall that the Detroit Red Wings put Marchenko on waivers for the purpose of sending him to the AHL. The Leafs waived Frank Corrado for the same reason and claimed Marchenko.
This might be that kind of waivers, and the only reason they’d be doing it now is in the hope someone would take him off their hands, reduce the SPC count, and get rid of his inflated cap hit. He’s a decent depth defender, but his cap hit of $1.45 million is more than that’s worth. (Corrected from the earlier lower number I had transposed in error.)
The other kind of waivers, sometimes called “buck twenty-five waivers” because the fee paid is $125 dollars, are Unconditional Waivers used when there is to be a termination of a player’s contract. The most common reason for that to happen is when a player has a better opportunity to play in Europe. It’s possible Marchenko has a KHL offer he’d like to accept.
Whatever is going on, we’ll find out when the Leafs are good and ready to tell us!
Edited to add the answer:
Confirmed: Marchenko is on unconditional waivers. That means his contract will be terminated tomorrow and he'll return to the KHL.— James Mirtle (@mirtle) August 14, 2017
Unconditional waivers it is. I wish Marchenko the best of luck in the KHL. He did nothing but his best in Toronto, and we should thank him for that.
Edited again to add confirmation from the agent (no message from the team so far because, of course):
Alexey Marchenko of Toronto Maple Leafs has decided to continue his career at home in Russia.He intends to comeback to the NHL in the future— Dan Milstein-Hockey (@HockeyAgent1) August 15, 2017
49 SPCs now, once Connor Brown is signed.