The Devils said on Twitter Monday the 33-year-old veteran would be assigned to Binghamton of the AHL if not claimed. It seems unlikely a team would do so since it would inherit his $6 million annual salary, which runs through the 2021-22 season. Also, Schneider had battled a hip injury in recent years.
He has an 0-4-1 record in six starts this season and has played only twice in the last 13 games. The Massachusetts native he had a goals-against average of 4.59 and a .852 save percentage.
"The way the schedule comes now, we didn’t see him getting into a lot of games in the next couple of weeks," Devils coach John Hynes said. "When a player, particularly a goalie, if you’re not going to have an opportunity to play, it’s hard to get the game reps and confidence that you need."
Schneider spent time at Binghamton last season working on his game and played well late in the season. It has not carried over to this season.
"If he does clear waivers and go to Binghamton, it’s not the end of the road for us here," Hynes said.
Devils captain Andy Greene said Schneider played well in training camp, but he has struggled since the season started. A couple of teammates spoke with the goaltender after the move was announced.
"It’s just one of those things where it’s tough," Greene said. "You don’t really know what to say or how to react. We need to support him and support everybody else in the room as best we could."
The Devils acquired Schneider from the Vancouver Canucks in 2013 for a first-round draft pick. He split playing time with Hall of Famer Martin Brodeur in 2013-14 and then became the No. 1 goaltender. His best season was in 2015-16 when he posted a 27-25-6 record with a 2.15 goals-against average and four shutouts. He went to the All-Star game.
New Jersey also recalled recently acquired goaltender Louis Domingue from Binghamton to serve as the backup to Mackenzie Blackwood. Domingue was acquired from Tampa Bay for a conditional seventh-round pick in the 2021 NHL draft. The 27-year-old had a 2-1-1 record at Binghamton after the trade. He was 21-5-0 with the Lightning last season.