Phoenix Coyotes Waive Defenseman Rostislav Klesla
Throughout the offseason, Rostislav Klesla’s name emerged as a potential trade candidate because of the Phoenix Coyotes’ embarrassment of riches on their blueline and in their system. After weeks of playing musical defenseman on the third pairing, Phoenix finally made a move, waiving the 31-year-old defenseman.
Playing in 15 of the team’s 24 games, Klesla recorded a goal and three points while averaging around two hits and one block per game.
Klesla has been a key piece on the Coyotes’ blueline since being acquired from the Columbus Blue Jackets (along with Dane Byers) in exchange for Scotty Upshall and Sami Lepisto in February 2011. However, he has been a healthy scratch recently as coach Dave Tippett has not been thrilled with Klesla’s play and in turn decided to go younger on the blueline.
Klesla is in the final year of a four-year, $11.9 million contract he signed in Columbus (he’s due to make $2.975 million this season).