That really is surprising. Cheap, young, talented winger... there are 10 teams I can name off the top of my head that could use that type of player.
A 25 year old that put up 2 goals in 44 games last year, is it really that surprising he can't make anyones top 6 for now (he would be useless on the bottom 6 and cannot be sent to another teams AHL team)?
It's the same song and dance every year. A "surprising" or "huh" player ends up on waivers, and a million people on HF think they're going to be claimed. Time and time again, 99% of players, regardless of name recognition, have passed through.
Valabik is just not a good player, and even though I have an extra special hate for his player since he was in Kitchener, it was pretty easy to see that with his skating he needed so much work to progress to an NHL regular.
Brunnstrom is still living off of half a good SEL season, a hockey news article, and a first game hat trick. He may be NHL caliber, but he's a tweener. Not quite good enough for a Top 6 role, too soft for a bottom six role. He went from Div 1, to SEL, to NHL in three seasons. It's an impressive growth pattern, but when he hadn't proven much in the SEL to begin with, it seemed too good to be true. Maybe he'll get another shot.
Although I'm sure Grabner's claiming got people's hopes up.
I have to wonder if the Isles hadn't grabbed Grabner, if they'd have picked up Brunnstrom. No complaints about Grabs, as the Isles needed his speed (which he's used nicely to backcheck), but he's never put up 17 goals in a season, and Brunnstrom has.