According to the Edmonton Oilers official Twitter account, the club has placed winger Ryan Jones on waivers. The move doesn’t come as a surprise given the poor play that Jones has portrayed at training camp this year.
Brought back to the fold this summer and signed to a one-year deal with the Oilers, Jones was looking like a lock on the fourth line, maybe even the third line. But this is why they play the exhibition games and it adds value in bringing in additional free-agents to compete for a roster spot.
Players like Will Acton and Ryan Hamilton are hungry for their chance to play in the NHL and now have outplayed Jones, sending the veteran packing.
Bruce McCurdy of the Edmonton Journal had this to say about Jones when examining the Oilers roster:
Seems to be blowing an ever bigger bubble from one game to the next. His spot on the final roster is not assured. Doesn’t seem very confident with the puck, such as the time he turned a routine breakout pass into an icing and an own-zone draw for his tired line.
Not exactly a ringing endorsement for the character type player that Jones can be. But with changes necessary in Edmonton, not having Jones in an Oilers’ uniform doesn’t come as a surprise. This is a new team with a new leader and he will have the full ability to ice the club that he feels will compete for him.
Oilers’ Nation has also been vocal about the play of Jones over the past few games, citing his inability to make much of anything happen, leading to the expectation that he would be placed on waivers.
It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Jones claimed by another NHL club. He could bring value to another team’s fourth line in a checking role, providing Jones can rekindle his game in a short period of time and prove he belongs, if he gets claimed.