Devils general manager Lou Lamoriello told me this morning that he won't be putting in a claim for Anaheim Ducks defenseman Mathieu Schneider before today's noon deadline. The Ducks placed Schneider on waivers Tuesday to try to clear his $5.625 million salary from their payroll and create cap room to sign Teemu Selanne, but Lamoriello said he wasn't interested in Schneider at that price.
"To me, it's a lot of money," he said.
When asked if he thought any other team would pick up Schneider, Lamoriello said, "I have no idea."
Lamoriello also cleared up some things concerning defenseman Vitali Vishnevski, who is playing in Russia, but remains Devils' property. The Devils retain Vishnevski's NHL rights and his average salary ($1.8 million) will continue to count against the team's cap until the regular season begins, though the team is not paying him. When teams trim their rosters before the regular season opens -- and players begin being paid their salaries -- then Vishnevski will come off the team's cap.
Lamoriello also mentioned that he might place Vishnevski on waivers again to give another team a chance to claim him again. He explained that Vishnevski will remain on the team's reserve list this season (if he's not claimed) and though the Devils aren't near the 50-player limit, "you never know what can happen."
Lamoriello is optimistic that the ice at Prudential Center will be improved this season after the team had trouble with the computer regulating the temperature last season. "I hope so," he said.
He said workers from CIMCO were at the arena this summer to try to solve the problem and the ice has been laid down the main arena rink already, "but you never know until you start playing on it."
"It has a lot to do with the balance in the building with the temperature," he said.
Lamoriello said nothing significant came out of Tuesday's Board of Governors meeting in Toronto. "It was just about the state of the game."
The Devils had 17 veterans on the ice for this mornings informal skate. The first official practice of their NHL training camp is Saturday morning. Today is the second day of their minor league camp and the first group (the same as Tuesday's first group) took the ice shortly after 10 a.m.
The veterans on the ice today: Martin Brodeur, Kevin Weekes, Johnny Oduya, Sheldon Brookbank, Mike Mottau, Andy Greene, John Madden, David Clarkson, Jay Pandolfo, Travis Zajac, Zach Parise, Jamie Langenbrunner, Mike Rupp, Dainius Zubrus, Rod Pelley, Bobby Holik and Brian Gionta.
I'll have a report on the minor league camp at some point after the first session.