Detroit Places Former Capitals’ Left-Wing Vrana On Waivers

Photo: CBS Sports

The Detroit Red Wings placed former Washington Capitals left-wing Jakub Vrana on waivers on Wednesday after the 26-year-old has played just 28 games over his first two full seasons with the team due to shoulder surgery prior to last season and entrance into the NHL/NHLPA’s player assistance program this year.

Vrana was reinstated by the NHL on December 16 and was assigned to the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins recently for a conditioning stint.

Vrana has played just 39 games since arriving at the trade deadline on April 12. 2021, in the deal that sent left-wing Anthony Mantha to Washington. However, over his quick tenure in Detroit, Vrana has scored 22 goals with 32 points.

Vrana has two years left on a contract that counts $5.25 million against the NHL salary cap. If a team claims him, they would have to pay Vrana at just half that amount.

In 284 career games with the Capitals, Vrana has recorded 76 goals, 157 points, and a +36 rating. He set career-highs in goals (25) and points (52) in 69 games during the 2019-20 season. He has no points and a combined -8 rating in 15 Stanley Cup Playoff games over the past two seasons when the Capitals were eliminated in the first round both times after recording three goals and eight points in 23 games during the 2018 tournament.

Capitals GM Brian MacLellan said he saw a “frustrated player” in Vrana in terms of his body language and the team wanted to move on from that. Head coach Peter Laviolette scratched Vrana twice before the Capitals traded him and never seemed to click with the young Czech after the team hired him.

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
This entry was posted in News and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to Detroit Places Former Capitals’ Left-Wing Vrana On Waivers

  1. Anonymous says:

    I wish we knew what he was dealing with. Probably not going well. Feel for the kid.

  2. KimRB says:

    Whoa! Didn’t see that coming.

    Hope you catch on with another team, and get things going, Jake. Will never forget 2018

    • Jon Sorensen says:

      Depends on what he’s dealing with, but yes, hope he finds solid footing very soon. Worried about that kid.

      • novafyre says:

        I’m going to be brutal here, but Vrana is not a kid. He’s 26. He is an adult. He’s making over $5 million a year. Yes, maybe not all of his issues are of his own making, but, like Sammy, he did not show a lot of maturity with the Caps. I think Sammy has done some learning this past year, but I do wonder if Vrana’s being placed on waivers isn’t based, at least in part, to his continued immaturity.

        I don’t wish him ill. But I don’t consider him the way I would one of our young prospects.

        • Jonathan says:

          One person’s immaturity is another persons psycho/emotional struggles. With the right support, someone with the later can overcome and find a home and success. We’ve seen it happen. Both can find their struggles and both can be overcome, but the later is more serious and more challenging. Immaturity could be used to minimize the seriousness of what he’s dealing with, though I’m sure that’s not your intent. I hope he’s getting the right help, because the wrong help can make life worse for him. Overcoming difficulty and living as a victim are different in life quality.

          I wish him the best! And that he does land on his feet.

          • novafyre says:

            As I said, I don’t wish him ill. But he is an adult, not a kid. He turned the Caps off and now the Wings have soured on him. I had hoped the first had been a wakeup call (as it appears it was to Sammy) and that he would have a great time with the Wings. Now, he has burned a second bridge. I hope that he is, as you say, getting the right help but more than that, I hope that he is listening. And learning.

            • Gadd19 says:

              The wings haven’t soured on him.. he’s on a conditioning stint in grand rapids, but in order to make room for fabbri tomorrow, someone had to leave the active roster.. the young line is doing really well together so this move makes sense. I hope he clears, finishes the 2 week stint, and comes back to help the 2nd line next week. GWG!

  3. novafyre says:

    Could be so many things. Might still have not overcome his medical issues, might have a chip on his shoulders having to do conditioning in the AHL and ticked management off as he did the Caps management.

    I think this pretty much settles which team won the trade.

    • KimRB says:

      The winner of that trade was….. The Dallas Stars. Detroit got our 1st round pick of 2021 in that deal, they traded up with Dallas, who selected Wyatt Johnson, with our pick. Stars fans are raving about Wyatt, who is their third line center. Detroit, with the Dallas pick, took goalie Sébastien Cossa. With our 2nd round pick in 2022, Detroit took Russian Dimitri Buchelnikov, who apparently is still in the KHL

      • horn73 says:

        Agreed. As Red Wing fans advised Caps fans, Mantha is very inconsistent, which has proven to be true. I think Mantha will be traded if and when cap space is needed. The Caps gained cap space which was important, but I’d put Mantha in the down as a disappointment from this Caps fan.

        • Anonymous says:

          You obviously don’t know hockey or are missing games. He may not be setting records but he has been effective in opening space. Creating opportunity and scores when has the chance

          • KimRB says:

            Nice snark. It’s been my experience that those that use snark are the ones that lack confidence in their arguments.

            Mantha is a floater. At TIMES he’s opening space, at TIMES he’s driving the net, at TIMES he’s involved. At other times he’s nowhere near the puck, floating along like he’s wondering what’s on TV that night. I’ve watched him specifically on a lot of his shifts, and I can tell you for a fact, he spends more time floating, than being actively involved.

  4. Lance says:

    I didn’t see that coming. I’ll reserve judgment until I see more facts. Vrana has top 6 winger talent. Hope he gets back on track and reaches his potential.

  5. Scottlew73 says:

    I would suggest to Novafyre to read “ The save of my life” by Corey Hirsch,details how he was crippled by OCD for not only his junior career but also his entire professional time as goalie & goalie coach.
    While many people say thier “professionals getting paid to play kid’s game “!,the other thing should be remembered is a lot are pulled from their families in thier mid-teens and are expected to make life decisions before thier out of thier teens!
    I’ve said for years that NHL draft shouldn’t occur until players are 21 years old,would give @ least 4 years for players to learn real life and how to manage it.
    I hope for JV he can see chance to step away & get life in control & live good off ice!

    • KimRB says:

      The NHL draft was started in 1963, and the minimum age was 17. It was raised to 20 in 1967, then lowered to 19 in 1978, and finally settled at 18 the next year. I believe the WHA had something to do with that. A kid named Wayne Gretzky signed with the Indianapolis Racers, on a professional services contract, at age 17, which is why Gretzky was never drafted into the NHL.

      Everybody’s different. Some kids display amazing maturity, at a young age, some are still acting up into their 30s (Sean Avery jumps to mind). And some are immature, but develop the maturity later (Brad Marchand). Some, like former Cap John Kordic , don’t live long enough to develop the maturity.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Goodbye good riddance. You make 5 million a year for doing nothing than taking up cap space. Go play something else like golf.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Another coach has had enough of his crap.

Leave a Reply