The Dallas Stars placed defenseman Aaron Rome on unconditional waivers Monday. If he clears, the team plans to exercise a compliance buyout on Rome’s contract, which has one year remaining.
Under the buyout, the Stars will pay Rome two-thirds of his 2014-15 salary of $1.6 million spread out over two years. It will cost the Stars $533,333 each of the next two seasons. There will be no hit to the Stars’ salary cap because teams were given two compliance buyouts as part of the CBA following the 2012-13 lockout.
“Aaron is a good man, he plays hard. That’s where it is tough,” said Stars GM Jim Nill. “On the flip side, we have four kids down in Texas knocking on the door. We have four or five guys that as we watch these [Calder Cup] playoffs that are very close to making our roster, so we needed to open up some roster spots.”
The Texas Stars are playing in the American Hockey League’s Calder Cup Finals. They currently lead the St. John’s IceCaps 2-1 with Game 4 being played Monday night in St. John’s.
Pushing hard for the NHL are Texas defensemen Patrik Nemeth, Jamie Oleksiak and Jyrki Jokipakka. John Klingberg, who was with Texas but had his season end due to hip surgery, also is considered a contender for a roster spot. Cameron Gaunce is playing well for Texas and is in the mix as well.
The Stars currently have six defensemen on the roster. Alex Goligoski, Trevor Daley, Sergei Gonchar, Jordie Benn and Kevin Connauton all are under contract. Brenden Dillon is a restricted free agent.
With the players from the AHL pushing for a roster spot, that leaves the 30-year-old Rome as the odd man out. The Stars signed Rome as a free agent in July 2012, agreeing to a three-year, $4.5 million contract. Rome, who was slowed by injuries, played just 52 games over two seasons, including 25 in 2013-14.
“Aaron has had some tough times staying in the lineup,” said Nill. “We just have to move forward.”
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Hockey League or Dallas Stars Hockey Club. Mark Stepneski is an independent writer whose posts on DallasStars.com reflect his own opinions and do not represent official statements from the Dallas Stars. You can follow Mark on Twitter @StarsInsideEdge.