One of Bob Murray’s most maligned contracts is up for grabs.
Stoner, 31, joined Anaheim on the opening day of free agency in 2014, after spending the first 10 years of his pro career with the Wild organization. Upon inking, Stoner told reporters the Ducks “made it known they were looking for more size,” adding “they like physical defenseman on the back-end.”
But things have changed since then.
Stoner missed 45 games over the last two years due to a variety of ailments — a hip flexor injury, among others — and occasionally sat as a healthy scratch. He was a non-factor in last year’s playoffs, appearing in just one contests during Anaheim’s opening-round loss to Nashville.
Stoner was also dealing with a legal situation involving an alleged unlawful grizzly bear hunt, which dragged on throughout his time in Anaheim.
It’s not really surprising the Ducks made this move. As we’ve previously reported, they’re in a financial bind — prized RFAs Hampus Lindholm and Rickard Rakell remain unsigned, and reports suggest Murray’s been looking to move a substantial contract to clear cap space.
What’s more, head coach Randy Carlyle said the club is giving three of its brightest young d-men prospects — Shea Theodore, Brandon Montour and Jacob Larsson — “every opportunity” to try and make the team this year.
As such, Stoner’s on the outs.