The Detroit Red Wings are going to use a compliance buyout on defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo.
The Red Wings will shed his $2.5 million salary-cap charge for 2013-14, though Colaiacovo's salary for next season is $2.85 million. The Red Wings will owe him two-thirds of that amount (roughly $1.9 million) over the next two seasons. If he clears waivers, he will become an unrestricted free agent.
"I got married over the weekend, so it was something that wasn't even on my mind," Colaiacovo told the team's website Wednesday. "I've been hearing a lot of rumors over the last couple of weeks, but I really didn't know what to believe because I haven't heard from anybody of importance."
Colaiacovo, 30, was limited to six games during the 2012-13 regular season due to a sprained shoulder sustained during the second game of the season, Jan. 21 at the Columbus Blue Jackets. He finished with one assist and a minus-4 rating.
The Red Wings signed him to a two-year, $5 million contract on Sept. 14, 2012.
"I came into Detroit last summer because I knew I was a top-four guy that could play in a situation there," Colaiacovo said. "I went through some difficulties last year that I would rather not talk about, but I still believe that I'm a guy who can play top-four on any team. I believe that I've proved that through my play, but they have some young guys who they relied upon real hard and some guys that they're going to lean towards next year. So who knows where I would have fit in there?"
Colaiacovo was a healthy scratch down the stretch and during Detroit's first five Stanley Cup Playoff games before playing in the final two games of the first round against the Anaheim Ducks and the entire seven-game series loss to the Chicago Blackhawks. He had no goals, one assist and a plus-3 rating in nine playoff games.
"I still believe in myself, I believe in my abilities that I can help a team win," Colaiacovo said. "We were a game away from eliminating the Blackhawks this year and who knows where that could have led us to, but I consider myself a big part of that."
Buying out Colaiacovo will leave the Red Wings with seven NHL defensemen: Niklas Kronwall, Jonathan Ericsson, Kyle Quincey, Brendan Smith, Jakub Kindl, Danny DeKeyser and Brian Lashoff.
"When [Carlo] got hurt, Lashoff had the opportunity to play 20 games," Red Wings general manager Ken Holland said. "[Lashoff] has to go through waivers; if [Lashoff] didn't get a chance I'm not sure where he'd end up. Jakub Kindl got a chance due to all of the injuries, and they all did a good job, and we really want to carry seven D.”
MLive.com reported Tuesday the Red Wings do not plan to buy out forward Todd Bertuzzi, who has one year remaining at a salary-cap charge of $2.075 million. Forward Mikael Samuelsson is not eligible for a compliance buyout because he has an injured pectoral muscle.