Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Pens waive Taffe, one step closer to losing Beech

Somewhat surprising news: the Pens have waived Jeff Taffe and intend to send him to the AHL if he goes unclaimed. Taffe carved out a pretty solid niche as a 4th line center that played responsible hockey in 45 NHL games last season and although he didn't touch the ice for a game in post-season play, we thought his place as 4th line center/13th forward was secure.

Bill Thomas and Paul Bissonnette though beat Taffe out, as the Penguins obviously must feel they have enough talent but not enough grit and toughness. Emergency goalie for the Sweden trip John Curry was also sent back to the AHL, as expected.

Taffe played in the first game in Sweden and even got some time in with the second powerplay unit before being a scratch in Game 2. We have to wonder if the coaches saw something they didn't like.

The Penguins roster now stands at 22 players, one less than the maximum. Did they waive Taffe to potentially put a claim in for one of the many veterans on waivers? Interesting.

Also since Kris Beech won't report to Wilkes-Barre, the team put him on unconditional waivers. He likely won't be claimed by anyone but this gives Pittsburgh an out to not pay him anymore as Beech tries to find a league over-seas to play in.

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