Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet shocked the NHL world by providing the following Twitter update in the morning:
“#NHL news #Predators place former #Leafs Lebda on unconditional waivers today. In all probability for purpose of being bought out”
As the NHL world reviews the unfolding of this new saga, pundits sit in the corner with a smug satisfied smile on their face. The reason behind that of course is a correct prediction.
Experts had already deduced from earlier speculation that the Nashville Predators might buy out Brett Steven Lebda instead of holding him out. This has blown away confounded analysts, after all Predators had acquired him after trading off Cody Franson and Matt Lombadri to Toronto.
Franson and Lombardi were proving to be an asset to the squad and analysts were hailing them as advantage to the Predators rosters, therefore their exit had analysts pulling their hair out.
Now the main question is if Predators actually posses the right to buy out Lebda. Some analysts would beg to differ. The reason behind that would be the Section 11.18 of the CBA. The article quotes: (Emphasis laid to the scripture in Italics)
“11.18 – Ordinary Course Buy-Outs Outside the Regular Period. Clubs shall have the right to exercise Ordinary Course Buy-Outs outside the regular period for Ordinary Course Buy-Outs in accordance with Paragraph 13(c) (ii) of the SPC. Each Club shall be limited to no more than three (3) such buyouts over the term of this Agreement pursuant to Paragraph 13(c) (ii) of the SPC. No Club shall exercise an Ordinary Course Buy-out outside the regular period for any Player earning less than $1 million.”
Now as the Predators had just one salary arbitration hearing the case falls under Section 12.3(a) which quotes:
In conclusion of this case it appears Predators will not be able to buy their way out of Lebda’s contract.