By Stephen Whyno
AP Sports Writer
The Tampa Bay Lightning and Boston Bruins are cutting ties with expensive defensemen to save some salary-cap space for next season.
According to a person with direct knowledge of the moves, the Lightning placed Matt Carle and the Bruins placed Dennis Seidenberg on buyout waivers. Nashville Predators defenseman Barret Jackman, Los Angeles Kings defenseman Matt Greene, Columbus Blue Jackets forward Jared Boll and Edmonton Oilers forward Lauri Korpikoski were also placed on waivers for the purpose of buying out their contracts.
The person spoke on the condition of anonymity Thursday because the teams didn’t announce their decisions.
The person also said Predators forward Eric Nystrom cleared buyout waivers. The Calgary Flames announced Mason Raymond cleared waivers and will be bought out.
The Carolina Hurricanes also announced they bought out the final season of defenseman James Wisniewski’s contract, saving $3 million. Despite playing only 47 seconds for Carolina last season before tearing the ACL in his left knee, the 32-year-old said he enjoyed his time in Raleigh and intends to be back playing for someone.
“No doubt my workouts and skating all summer is getting me ready for this upcoming season.,” Wisniewski said on Twitter. “Lord knows I’m well rested!”
Carle had two years left on his contract at a salary-cap hit of $5.5 million. The buyout saves the Lightning $3.67 million in cap space for the next two seasons.
Tampa Bay wanted to clear space after re-signing Steven Stamkos to a $68 million, eight-year deal. With restricted free agents Nikita Kucherov, Alex Killorn, Vladislav Namestnikov and Nikita Nesterov in need of new contracts, general manager Steve Yzerman said the buyout window was one avenue he could explore.
Seidenberg had two years left on his contract at a cap hit of $4 million. The buyout saves the Bruins $2.83 million next season.
The Predators’ buyouts save about $3.3 million during the same week they signed forward Filip Forsberg to a $36 million, six-year contract and acquired defenseman P.K. Subban in a trade with the Montreal Canadiens for captain Shea Weber.
The free agent market opens at noon Eastern on Friday.