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Canadiens Maintain Strong Priority As NHL Waivers Set To Open



Montreal Canadiens scouts Hughes

UPDATE: 2018 First-Round Pick Ty Smith Was Placed On Waivers By The Penguins

The Montreal Canadiens have done rather well when it comes to claiming players on waivers, especially in recent years.

It’s not easy to find talent in the NHL, particularly on waivers, but players such as Paul Byron, Johnathan Kovacevic, and Samuel Montembeault were all acquired for free thanks to the waiver wire, which goes to show that there are some diamonds in the rough available once in a blue moon.

Thursday marked the first official day of the season in which teams can place players on waivers, giving all 32 NHL organizations enough time to prepare for the opening of the regular-season schedule. The waiver wire officially opens at 2 p.m. ET.

NHL Waiver Priority List

So, what does this mean for the Montreal Canadiens?

As it stands, the waiver priority list is still based on the final standings of the 2022-23 season, in which the Canadiens finished with just 68 points.

Just as they ended up with the fifth overall pick at the 2023 NHL Entry Draft, the Canadiens are fifth on the current waiver priority list.

Waiver-claim priority is explained in the following manner in the NHL’s collective bargaining agreement.

In the event that more than one Club makes a claim for such Player, he shall: (i) be transferred to the claiming Club having earned the lowest percentage of possible points in the League standing at the time of the request for Waivers, or (ii) if Waivers are requested outside the Regular Season, or the successful Waiver claim is made (i.e., the date the Player would be transferred to a successful claiming Club per this Section), before November 1st then the priority shall be determined by the final standing in the League’s Regular Season schedule in the preceding Regular Season.

Margin For Error

For the time being, the Canadiens are not at risk of losing their position on the waiver priority list because the NHL uses the previous year’s final standings until November 1.

After November 1, the waiver priority list will be based on the current 2023-24 standings.

Complete NHL Waiver Priority List

The current NHL waiver priority list is as follows.

TeamsWaiver Priority Order
Anaheim Ducks1
Columbus Blue Jackets2
Chicago Blackhawks3
San Jose Sharks4
Montreal Canadiens5
Arizona Coyotes6
Philadelphia Flyers7
Washington Capitals8
Detroit Red Wings9
St-Louis Blues10
Vancouver Canucks11
Ottawa Senators12
Buffalo Sabres13
Pittsburgh Penguins14
Nashville Predators15
Florida Panthers16
Calgary Flames17
NY Islanders18
Winnipeg Jets19
Tampa Bay Lightning20
Seattle Kraken21
Minnesota Wild22
Los Angeles Kings23
NY Rangers24
Dallas Stars25
Colorado Avalanche26
Edmonton Oilers27
Vegas Golden Knights28
Toronto Maple Leafs29
New Jersey Devils30
Carolina Hurricanes31
Boston Bruins32