Somewhere Mike Gillis is yelling “I told you so!” today.
The Buffalo Sabres put former Canucks 1st round draft pick Cody Hodgson on unconditional waivers today, for the purpose of buying him out. Because Hodgson is under 26-years-old, he can be bought out at 1/3 of his contract (rather than 2/3 of his salary if they wanted to buy him out next year).
Now before Canucks fans proclaim “we won the trade”, note that the biggest hindrance to Hodgson is the contract that former Sabres GM Darcy Regier signed him to.
Hodgson has four years left on his six-year deal that carries a $4.25 million cap hit. That’s way too much money to commit to a player who had just 13 points in 78 games and saw a lot of time on the fourth line of the worst team in the NHL last year.
Before last year’s debacle, Hodgson actually put up some good numbers with Buffalo. He had 34 points in 48 games during the lockout shortened season in 2012-13, playing primarily with Thomas Vanek. The next season, Hodgson scored 20 goals and 44 points in 72 games.
Hodgson is 25-years-old, so he still has plenty of time to get his career back on the rails. He could use a new coach and a change of scenery. He would be a good gamble for a team needing a skilled centre and he is sure to be humbled and motivated by this turn of events.
So how ’bout it Canucks fans, would you take him back?