The New York Islanders placed winger Kieffer Bellows on waivers Wednesday, as first reported by Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
It’s the latest twist in a peculiar tale that has seen the promising young forward pushed toward the back of the organization yet again.
The 24-year-old was touted as a high-upside offensive talent when he was drafted by the Islanders 19th overall in 2016, but he’s played in just 68 NHL games across four seasons in which he’s largely been used as an extra forward.
Bellows scored 22 goals in 52 games with the orgainzation’s AHL affiliate in Bridgeport but has scored just 11 career goals across those sporadic NHL appearances.
Following a promising showing last season when he put up six goals and 19 points in 45 games, he won signed a one-year, $1.2 million pact to stay with New York and even won a spot on the team’s opening-night 23-man roster. But he had appeared in just one game this season, losing time to the likes of Nikita Soshnikov and Ross Johnston.
“I want to go out there and be in that first-game lineup and I just don’t want to do that,” Bellows told amNewYork ahead of opening night. “I want to be on the 82-game lineup and put the work in that I have during the preseason, that style that I played, that power forward — I want to play that style.”
If he clears waivers, Bellows will report to Bridgeport and still be paid his $1.2 million.