Montreal Canadiens Running Out Of Time On Their Waivers Priority
The Montreal Canadiens are running out of time on their waiver priority, as the order is about to reset in the coming days.
The Canadiens have had priority on every single player that has gone through waivers since April of 2022, and that is about to come to an end. The Canadiens retained this advantage throughout camp and into the regular season; it allowed them to swoop in on some quality players they would have otherwise had to trade for to acquire.
The Canadiens used their priority only once, and it was to claim defenceman Jonathan Kovacevic from the Winnipeg Jets earlier this month. The 25-year-old right-shot rearguard has been a revelation for the Canadiens so far this season, playing on a very stable pair with Jordan Harris and putting up some great underlying numbers.
The Canadiens would likely have liked to use their waiver priority a little more this fall, but their current logjam at forward made it difficult for them to keep a fluid 23-man roster intact without having to subject a veteran to waivers. Unfortunately for them, their time at the top of the priority is set to end as of November 1 per the NHL‘s collective bargaining agreement:
“In the event that more than one Club makes a claim for such Player, he shall: (i) be transferred to the claiming Club having earned the lowest percentage of possible points in the League standing at the time of the request for Waivers, or (ii) if Waivers are requested outside the Regular Season, or the successful Waiver claim is made (i.e., the date the Player would be transferred to a successful claiming Club per this Section), before November 1st then the priority shall be determined by the final standing in the League’s Regular Season schedule in the preceding Regular Season.”
As of November 1, the waiver priority goes in reverse order of the standings on a daily basis, meaning that, if things stay as they are right now, the Canadiens would be 13th in waiver priority order and the Anaheim Ducks would instead get the first crack at players currently on waivers. That order will fluctuate on a daily basis as the standings change throughout the season, meaning that the Canadiens will move up or down the priority list according to their place in the standings.