Bryan Bickell is available, but he will cost an interested team $4.5 million in salary in each of the next two seasons.
The Chicago Blackhawks placed the bruising forward on waivers Friday after failing to find a trade partner.
Sportsnet’s Mark Spector reported earlier this week that Chicago GM Stan Bowman had been in talks with Edmonton regarding a potential deal that would see Oilers defenceman Nikita Nikitin going the other way. That swap fell apart and, barring someone scooping him up by noon Saturday, Bickell, 29, will be demoted to the American Hockey League or possibly placed on long-term injury reserve.
After playing a key role in Chicago’s 2013 Stanley Cup victory, Bickell inked a four-year, $16-million contract he has yet to live up to.
Suffering from vertigo during the 2015 Cup final, Bickell saw limited action. Last season the big Bowmanville, Ont., native scored 14 goals and 14 assists in 80 regular-season games. He had five assists in 18 playoff contests but failed to score a goal.
Bickell carries a hefty $4-million salary cap hit, and according to General Fanager, the Blackhawks began Friday over the ceiling.
Chicago also demoted forward Mark Dano to the AHL Friday, a surprising decision.
Here is the full list of players placed on waivers Friday, via Renaud Lavoie: