The Great Vrana watch of 2023 continues as Jakob Vrana cleared waivers on Wednesday afternoon. It is currently unclear what will happen next for Vrana. However, he remains a member of the Red Wings for now and could potentially be assigned to the Griffins for further conditioning. The future of Vrana's situation will be determined at a later time.
Why it matters: The decision to waive Vrána is notable as it follows his assignment to the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins on a conditioning loan just last week. Vrána has only played in two games this season, scoring a goal and an assist in a win against New Jersey in October. He was not in uniform for the following game against the Los Angeles Kings due to personal reasons.
Jakob Vrana - The Big Picture: On Tuesday, the Detroit Red Wings placed Jakub Vrána on waivers due to his absence during the current season. Coach Derek Lalonde commented on the decision during Wednesday's morning skate at Little Caesars Arena, stating that it was a factor in the team's decision. While the final decision to potentially lose the top-line winger without compensation belonged to general manager Steve Yzerman, Lalonde faced questions about the move.
Vrána, a 26-year-old Czech native, has played in 323 regular-season games and recorded 98 goals and 91 assists. He recently returned from the player assistance program, a service provided by the NHL and NHLPA to assist players and their families with mental health, substance abuse, and other issues.