Tampa Bay Lightning defender Andrej Sustr has been claimed on waivers by the Anaheim Ducks. This is the second time Sustr has been claimed by the Ducks after he was claimed in 2018-19 by the Ducks from Tampa during his first stint with the team. Now it’s happened again.
Anaheim claims Andrej Sustr off waivers from Tampa Bay.— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) March 8, 2022
Sustr played in 15 games for the Lightning this season, averaging 10 minutes a night on the third pair/seventh spot. His possession ratios were 45% in shots and goals while playing relatively light minutes when he came to defensive zone starts. He was a prototypical depth defender who could come in and play some minutes, but who you wouldn’t really want to rely on.
Now he goes to the Ducks, who have Josh Manson on injured reserve, and probably traded at the deadline too. I’m not really sure what they hope to get out of Sustr, but they had a free roster spot, loads of cap space, and Sustr is someone they have a previous relationship with.
The Lightning roster now has 13 forwards, six defensemen, and two goalies, for a total of 21 players. Zach Bogosian is on LTIR, but is expected to make his return to the lineup tonight, and as such will be activated. With Sustr off the roster, the Lightning’s available space goes from $100k to $850k.* When Bogosian gets activated from LTIR, he will use up that space, leaving the Lightning with $0 in cap space. Call it tight, call it efficient, but at the end of the day, they won’t be able to bring anyone in unless they take money out.
*Edit: Cap Friendly with the finalized cap number.
That means for whatever trade JBB makes, it’s got to be money out, money in. Or they could waive two of their extras (these players being Boris Katchouk and Cal Foote), but doing so would very likely see them get claimed and the team’s injury depth completely empty. Currently there is no one on the roster that is waivers exempt, so if anyone is coming off the roster, it’ll either be through trade or through waivers.
The Lightning would be able to bring in some players with salary retention, but a player cannot be retained more than twice on the same contract (ie. Phil Kessel is already retained once in Toronto), and the result of retention cannot mean a player is on a team’s cap at a number below the league minimum ($750k).