Cody Hodgson's contract made him a marked man from the day he signed it. Six years (remember this Vine?) and $25.5 million dollars sets a value that one must meet with on-ice production in order to justify the investment.
As Buffalo Sabres fans well know, Hodgson never matched the value of his contract on the ice, and today Tim Murray has placed him on unconditional waivers, the last step needed to buy out his contract.
Hodgson (BUF) and Stalberg (NASH) on buyout waivers today.— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) June 29, 2015
Since Hodgson is under 26 years old, his buyout will only cost the Sabres 1/3 of his contract value rather than 2/3 over double the remaining years. It breaks down like so:
Hodgson CapHit BO #'s.. 2015-16 - $1,041M 2016-17 - $541,667 2017-18 - $41,667 2018-19 - neg $458,333 2019-23 - $791,667 #CapFriendly— CapFriendly (@CapFriendly) June 29, 2015
Hodgson was in a tough spot after signing that contract - which most realized was too big at the time - and now has the opportunity to produce for a team under more appropriate circumstances, both financially and on the ice. He can still be effective as a sheltered winger, but his defensive liabilities will keep him from becoming a more reliable productive forward.
Thus endeth the Cody Hodgson era in Buffalo, and also gone is the last questionable contract handed out by former GM Darcy Regier. Hodgson's waiving provides a bit more clarity on potential Sabres lines for next year, and also proves once again that Tim Murray is building this team with the players he wants, not simply building around what was already there.
Give us your thoughts on Hodgson's career in Buffalo in the comments.