Jets place defenceman Sami Niku on waivers for purpose of buyout

Toronto Maple Leafs centre John Tavares (91) tries to drive past Winnipeg Jets defenceman Sami Niku (8) during third period NHL hockey action in Toronto on Monday, January 18, 2021. (Nathan Denette/CP)

The Winnipeg Jets placed defenceman Sami Niku on unconditional waivers Monday for the purposes of contract termination.

Niku had one season remaining on a two-year deal with an average annual value of $725,000.

The 24-year-old from Haapavesi, Finland, played in just six games with the Jets last year and recorded zero points.

He has two goals and eight assists in 54 games over parts of four NHL seasons since he was drafted in the seventh round, 198th overall, by Winnipeg in 2015.

Niku won the Eddie Shore Award as the American Hockey League's top defenceman and earned first all-star team and all-rookie team honours after registering 16 goals and 38 assists in 76 games with the Manitoba Moose during the 2017-18 season.

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