Nashville Predators general manager David Poile announced Tuesday that defenseman Hal Gill has been placed on waivers. Gill, 38, has one year, $2 million remaining on the contract he signed one year ago.
“One situation that has been affected by us taking Seth Jones is that we do have eight defensemen. I spoke to Hal Gill’s representatives last night and this morning and we’ve made a decision to put [him] on waivers today,” Poile said. “I don’t know what’s going to happen there, whether he’s going to be taken or not. We will revisit the situation in 24 hours to see whether he’s with us or not.”
Gill battled injuries throughout the 2012-13 season, failing to record a point and sporting a minus-3 rating in 32 games. He was a valuable member to the penalty kill late in the 2011-12 campaign and into last season, but was ineffective for much of 2012-13 and wasn’t guaranteed a spot in the top-six on defense heading into next season.
“Our conversations were good but a combination of things, from our club not performing as well, his ice time was cut back, his games were cut back a little bit. As a proud player and a very good player in the league, he wants to play more,” Poile said.
“I thought we had the situation resolved for our mutual benefit before he left, but with the drafting of Seth Jones … it’s not going to be a perfect fit for Hal.
“I think it got into position where he knew he was going to be one of seven. Based on his play and the development of some of the younger guys it wasn’t going to be a slam dunk he was going to be in every game.”
If Gill clears waivers, the possibility is there that he gets bought out by the Predators. Poile mentioned that the departure of Gill will cement Ryan Ellis and Mattias Ekholm onto the roster for next season.
Poile also announced today that restricted free agents Jonathon Blum and Matt Halischuk will not be tendered a qualifying offer. Both will become unrestricted free agents barring a last-second trade for either one of them. Poile said Sunday that Chris Mueller and Brandon Yip will not be re-signed, either.