After inviting him to training camp on a professional tryout, the Capitals have cut veteran center Derek Roy from their training camp roster.
The club also released goaltender Justin Peters, forward Liam O’Brien and defensemen Aaron Ness and Ryan Stanton, leaving them with a 24-man roster that includes forwards Chris Brown (who is expected to be placed on injured reserve), Sean Collins and Stan Galiev.
Peters, Ness and Stanton all must pass through NHL waivers before they can be assigned to the AHL Hershey Bears. The waiver period ends at noon on Tuesday.
One of the most difficult decisions of training camp came at the center position, where Roy and Chandler Stephenson battled for a roster spot. Roy, 32, had one goal and one assist, took two penalties and was a plus-1 in four preseason games.
The Caps invited him to camp because of the uncertainty surrounding Nicklas Backstrom and his return from hip surgery. But with Backstrom progressing well and likely to return before the end of October, the Caps decided Andre Burakovsky can handle the role of second-line center for the start of the season.
With Roy’s skill level, the Caps decided it did not make sense to have him playing on a fourth line during Backstrom’s absence while also having his salary count against the cap all season long.
Roy, who has 524 points in 738 regular season games and 27 points in 49 playoff games, is now free to sign with another NHL team.
Peters, 29, had an outstanding preseason, going 1-0-1 with a 0.71 GAA and 96.7 save percentage, stopping 29 of the 30 shots he faced.
But when the Caps awarded Philipp Grubauer a one-way contract carrying a cap hit of $750,000, it was clear that Peters likely would begin the season in Hershey, where he will share goaltending duties with Dan Ellis if he goes unclaimed.
Following today’s moves the Caps are roughly $600,000 under the salary cap. Here is the Caps’ current roster, with NHL cap hits:
Alex Ovechkin $9.538 million
Nicklas Backstrom $6.7 million
Brooks Laich $4.5 million
T.J. Oshie $4.175 million
Marcus Johansson $3.75 million
Justin Williams $3.25 million
Evgeny Kuznetsov $3 million
Jason Chimera $2 million
Jay Beagle $1.75 million
Tom Wilson $894,166
Andre Burakovsky $894,166
Michael Latta $575,000
Sean Collins $575,000
Stan Galiev $575,000
Chris Brown (injured – percentage of $575,000)
Matt Niskanen $5.75 million
Brooks Orpik $5.5 million
John Carlson $3.966 million
Karl Alzner $2.8 million
Dmitry Orlov $2 million
Nate Schmidt $812,500
Taylor Chorney $700,000
Braden Holtby $6.1 million
Philipp Grubauer $750,000
MORE CAPITALS: Trotz preaching patience with Orlov