Devils put reigning AHL MVP O’Neill on waivers

New Jersey has placed forward Brian O'Neill on waivers, per Sportsnet.

O’Neill, 27, was acquired by the Devils just prior to the start of the season in a trade with Los Angeles. A career minor-leaguer, O’Neill made waves last season by capturing AHL MVP honors with Manchester, on the strength of 78 points in 69 games.

Stuck behind a bevvy of talented forwards in Los Angeles, he got an opportunity for a more significant role in New Jersey this year. O’Neill made his NHL debut and appeared in 22 games for the Devils, scoring two points while averaging 10:22 TOI per game.

Per The Record, the O’Neill transaction was in order to clear roster spots for Tuomo Ruutu and Travis Zajac to come off IR. Zajac hasn’t played since Dec. 3, while Ruutu has been out since Oct. 16.

It’ll be interesting to see if someone takes a flier on O’Neill. He’s got a relatively low cap hit — $562,000 — and, with the Devils, showed he could play as a bottom-six forward at the NHL level.

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