Kuznetsov was placed on waivers by the Capitals

Evgeny Kuznetsov was placed on waivers by the Washington Capitals on Saturday.

The 31-year-old forward has 17 points (six goals, 11 assists) in 43 games this season and will be assigned to Hershey of the American Hockey League if he clears waivers. He has not played since January 27 and entered the NHLPA and NHL Player Assistance Program on February 5.

Earlier Saturday, Kuznetsov was cleared to resume training with the Capitals and entered the follow-up sponsorship phase of the NHL/NHLPA's Player Assistance Program.

Kuznetsov, who has been a healthy scratch on several occasions this season, is on pace for his fewest points since his 29 points in 2020-21 (in 41 games).

He has one season remaining on the eight-year, $62.4 million ($7.8 million average annual value) contract he signed with Washington on July 2, 2017.

Selected in the first round (No. 26) of the 2010 NHL Draft, Kuznetsov has 568 points (171 goals, 397 assists) in 723 regular season games for the Capitals, including four seasons of at least 20 goals. He has 67 points (29 goals, 38 assists) in 87 Stanley Cup Playoff games, and led the postseason with 32 points (12 goals, 20 assists) to help Washington win the Stanley Cup in 2018.

The Capitals (28-22-9), who host the Arizona Coyotes on Sunday, are four points behind the Philadelphia Flyers for third place in the Metropolitan Division with two games in hand, and five points behind the Tampa Bay Lightning for the second wild card. In the Eastern Conference playoffs with three games in hand.

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