The Pittsburgh Penguins shuffled their organizational depth chart Tuesday, including saying goodbye to one potential solution for a right-handed defenseman.
The Penguins put defenseman Will Butcher on waivers Tuesday for the purpose of assigning him to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the AHL. Butcher won’t officially clear until 2 p.m. ET on Wednesday.
Butcher was signed to a two-way deal on July 3. A two-way deal doesn’t protect a player from waivers, so Butcher must clear waivers to report to the WBS Penguins. The 28-year-old defenseman has 275 games of NHL experience but spent last season with the Texas Stars, the AHL affiliate of the Dallas Stars.
Butcher has been rehabbing an unspecified injury and did not participate in the preseason.
To make room for Butcher with the WBS Penguins, the AHL team released right-handed defenseman Mark Pysyk from his PTO. Pysyk was in the Pittsburgh Penguins training camp on a PTO but suffered a lower-body injury early in preseason and missed the remainder of training camp and preseason.
Pysyk has played in 521 NHL games and was seen as a potential right-handed solution for the Penguins, but has not yet been able to get healthy after missing all of last season with an Achilles injury. Pysyk played eight of a possible 20 games on the AHL PTO.
However, the WBS Penguins have filled their veteran maximum and did not have lineup space for another without releasing one.