PITTSBURGH (AP) -Mark Recchi, a career 510-goal scorer who was waived by the Pittsburgh Penguins earlier this week, was assigned Thursday to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the AHL.
It is uncertain whether Recchi must report to the Penguins' top farm club. Recchi has not played in the minors since 1990.
If the Penguins recall him - which they can do without him playing for Wilkes-Barre - another NHL team can claim Recchi for half of his $1.75 million contract. The Penguins would pay the other half.
Recchi passed through waivers without being claimed this week, but another team picking him up then would have been responsible for paying the rest of his salary this season.
Recchi, with Pittsburgh for the third time in his career, has two goals and six assists in 19 games but only one goal in 18 games.
Penguins coach Michel Therrien said the Penguins' younger players deserved more ice time than Recchi, who will turn 40 in February. Recchi was scratched for six consecutive games before being waived.
"We believe we gave him an opportunity," Therrien said. "It didn't work out."
The Penguins brought back Recchi and 41-year-old forward Gary Roberts this season to add their veteran presence to one of the NHL's youngest teams. Roberts has one goal and 10 assists in 26 games.