As expected, defenceman Mark Streit cleared unconditional waivers on Monday, paving the way for the Habs to terminate his contract and grant him his release.
As a result, the team will not be responsible for any of the remaining salary on his $700,000 contract or his $300,000 in bonuses (which almost assuredly weren’t met in his two games with the Canadiens this season). He also will no longer count against the 50-contract limit which will put them back at 46. That will give them some wiggle room as the season progresses to add a couple of players via trade or pursue some college free agents after the trade deadline.
The question now becomes what will happen with the 39-year-old veteran. Having cleared waivers now twice in less than a week, it’s fair to suggest that signing with another NHL team is out of the question and if he wasn’t willing to go to the minors with the Habs, he’s not likely going to be willing to do so with another organization.
While getting his release less than two weeks may not be the way he was hoping to end his career, Streit should be able to finish on better terms elsewhere before too long.
Although no arrangement appears to be in place, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Streit surface somewhere in the Swiss NLA in the days to come. That would allow him to likely recoup a big chunk of his forfeited salary with the Habs as top players can command upwards of $400,000 while also keeping him in shape for the upcoming Olympics and with no NHL players being allowed to go, Streit should be in line for a prominent role in that tournament. All things considered, that wouldn’t be too bad of an outcome for him despite things not working out in his second stint in Montreal.