According to Friend Of The Blog James "James Mirtle" Mirtle, Jared Cowen and the Leafs are disputing whether or not he's injured--and if he's injured, Cowen cannot be bought out.
Word is that the Leafs buyout of Jared Cowen is being disputed due to a continuing injury. That's why there's some confusion.— James Mirtle (@mirtle) July 1, 2016
According to Bob Mackenzie, the Leafs have now missed the first buyout window.
As I speculated on @OverDrive1050 tonight, Jared Cowen has not been bought out by TOR in the 1st buyout window, which is now closed.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 1, 2016
Both TOR brass/Cowen's rep refused comment on status. Belief is Cowen's medical status is in question. Injured player can't be bought out.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 1, 2016
It's believed NHLPA is now involved. This may well be subject of grievance arbitration but details scarce as both sides refuse to comment.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 1, 2016
When Cowen arrived from OTT in trade, he was shut down from active duty due to hip-related issues. So, for now, no buyout on Cowen.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 1, 2016
There's a lot at stake for both sides here--Cowen stands to lose $3,000,000 in real dollars if bought out, which looks all the more enormous considering his future NHL career is very much in doubt. The Leafs, on the other hand, save that much in real dollars, as well as a whopping $3.750M against the cap this year, if the buyout goes through.
|YEAR||CONTRACT SALARY DUE||CONTRACT CAP HIT||BUYOUT COST||BUYOUT SAVINGS||BUYOUT CAP HIT|
Somewhat infamously, the Leafs declined to play Cowen upon acquiring him, not wanting to risk damage to their cap-related meal ticket. Cowen was vocal about his disappointment with the decision--and asserted that he felt healthy enough to play, with potential consequences for this dispute. Stay tuned, sportsfans.
Update: Elliotte Friedman has chimed in with more info.
1) On Jared Cowen, hearing NHL & NHLPA began an arbitration case yesterday to determine whether or not TOR can buy him out...— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) July 1, 2016
2) There is still more to be done, so a decision is not expected in immediate future. No one (NHL, NHLPA, team or agent) is talking...— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) July 1, 2016
3) but, word is Cowen had surgery after he left TOR on a doctor's recommendation. Prior to that, he had been cleared to play in AHL...— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) July 1, 2016
4) So the dispute surrounds whether or not he was healthy. Apparently, that's for the arbitrator to decide. (Fini)— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) July 1, 2016
Stay staying tuned.