Canucks place Virtanen on waivers to buy him out

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The Vancouver Canucks have placed forward Jake Virtanen on unconditional waivers to proceed with a buyout, general manager Jim Benning confirmed Sunday.

In mid-May, a woman sued Virtanen, claiming he sexually assaulted her in 2017. The Canucks placed him on leave less than three weeks after she first made the allegations. The soon-to-be 25-year-old did not play a game after April 29.

The team would have owed Virtanen $3.4 million in total salary at a $2.55-million cap hit next season, according to CapFriendly. Vancouver signed him through 2021-22.

The Canucks have about $21 million in cap space after reportedly taking on $7.26 million of Oliver Ekman-Larsson's $8.25-million cap hit in Friday's blockbuster trade with the Arizona Coyotes. However, Vancouver still needs to sign franchise cornerstones Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes to new deals, and the club has a slew of additional pending free agents, including newcomer Conor Garland.

Virtanen spent his first six seasons with the Canucks, who drafted him sixth overall in 2014.

Canucks place Virtanen on waivers to buy him out
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