With just two days to go until the NHL’s trade deadline, every roster move is amplified, whether it deserves to be or not.
The Pittsburgh Penguins are reportedly pursuing at least one deal to enhance their forward depth, so anything they do until 3 p.m. Wednesday will certainly be scrutinized. That includes Monday’s placement of winger Chuck Kobasew on waivers, as relayed by TSN’s Bob McKenzie via Twitter.
The waiver process takes 24 hours before a player can be demoted or otherwise reassigned, as the other 29 NHL teams will first have an opportunity to put in claims for him. Putting Kobasew on waivers could be designed to clear roster space for a trade, or it could simply be a method to create a spot for an AHL call-up like Jayson Megna.
Kobasew, 31, is a 10-year NHL veteran, but when he hasn’t been injured he’s been downright ineffective for the Penguins this season. The British Columbia native has two goals and zero assists in 31 games while averaging just over 11 minutes of ice time per outing.
Looking at the possession numbers, Kobasew’s Corsi For percentage is 45.8, among the lowest on the Penguins. That number means that Pittsburgh creates just 45.8 percent of shot attempts when Kobasew is on the ice.
Pittsburgh’s lack of punch from its bottom two lines has been more and more evident lately, and Kobasew has been part of that problem. He is making $550,000 this year, so there would be little impact on team payroll if he’s released or claimed by another team.