Somik ** I believe he has to be protected.
Now, I say if as it stands and Fedoruk, LaPointe, and Therien or whoever could be extra players maybe they expose them to waivers as they could have seldom playing replacements available. Don't have to protect 18 skaters if they don't want to. Now, Leclair, unless he agrees to a negotiated buy-out, will cost them $9 million for this season. With a work stoppage possible after the season they could avoid paying the remainder of some or all the remainder depending on the length of the work stoppage. If there is no work stoppage they could buy him out after the season. Ordinarily he would have 18 million left but a 2/3 buyout would be 12 million. Since it would ordinarily be 2 years to pay over it could be paid over 4 years or around 3 million a year for 4 years. If he would have been bought out this offseason it would have been 3 million a year for 6 years. So the length of the work stoppage will determine the cost. Leclair, if he doesn't play again will cost between 9 and 21 million to lose.
I think that we should definitely expose LeClair in the waiver draft, wait throughout this year, to see how things go (hey, you never know), then, if things go as we all expect, buy him out next off-season. It will basically work out to an extra $4.5 million that will hopefully get us a (*&^*&$&%$*&*% Cup!