After just 50 regular season and one playoff game, Jordin Tootoo might be done in Detroit.
The Red Wings placed Tootoo on waivers on Wednesday, according to MLive.com. The 30-year-old winger finds himself on the wire after appearing in just eight games this year, scoring no points while posting a minus-4 rating in 7:13 TOI per game.
“The situation here is we have too many right wingers,” Detroit head coach Mike Babcock explained. “We’re not giving him a fair opportunity. He’s done nothing wrong, he’s played hard, he’s been a good teammate.
“We’ll see what happens. If Toots can get himself a place to play where he plays every night, that would be fantastic.”
Tootoo played just 5:38 in Monday’s 4-2 loss to the Jets, dropping the gloves with Chris Thorburn 16 seconds into the game:
The subject of trade rumors for months, Tootoo never found his niche in Detroit after signing a three-year, $5.7 million deal with the club on the opening day of free agency in 2012. Compounding matters was a shoulder injury that kept him out of the lineup for all of the preseason and the early part of the regular season, as well as Detroit’s glut of forwards.
It’ll be interesting to see if anybody takes a flier on Tootoo and his $1.9 million cap hit (his deal has two years remaining). If he goes unclaimed, it’s likely Detroit will dispatch him to AHL Grand Rapids, which is big for the cap-strapped Wings as they’d free up $925,000 in space with Tootoo in the minors.