The Dallas Stars seem to be cutting bait with their Bubble MVP.
The Stars placed goaltender Anton Khudobin on waivers Monday afternoon in a surprising move, potentially ending the veteran's tenure in the Lone Star State after four seasons.
Khudobin has struggled throughout the start of the 2021 campaign in the little time he's played, posting a disastrous .873 save percentage in seven appearances to go with a 3-3-1 record. After a mediocre 2021 campaign, during which Khudobin mustered a .905 save percentage in 32 games, the Stars likely view Khudobin at the beginning of his inevitable decline.
Ridding themselves of him won't be easy, though.
Khudobin is still under contract through the 2022-23 season at a cap hit of $3.33 million, and is owed $3.75 million in actual salary. At 35 years old, it's unlikely that other teams will want to hitch their wagon to a declining asset with a hefty price tag that carries an extra year of term. Khudobin may very well go unclaimed, leading the Stars to make a decision as to what to do with him for this year and beyond.
It wasn't too long ago, however, that Khudobin was the talk of the hockey world.
Taking over for an injured Ben Bishop, Khudobin became a legend of sorts, leading the Stars through the 2020 postseason bubble to their first Stanley Cup Final appearance since 1999 thanks to a .917 save percentage in 25 playoff games.
It's remarkable how quickly things can change.