Game Day: Islanders at Rangers 7pm and Explaining Emergency Recall

Sorry for the lack of a formal pre-game today, it’s been a really long week. I’ll be in the press box tonight at the Garden, so be sure to follow the game along with me on Twitter.

Lineup notes:
Mark Eaton has been activated from IR. To make room for him, Dylan Reese was returned to Bridgeport. Reese, as I mentioned yesterday, had been playing extremely well for the Islanders so the return could be a curious one. However, here are the clauses in the CBA that explains things a bit.

Section 3.10, l, i: A player on loan to a Club of any league affiliated with the League may be recalled from such loan under emergency conditions at any time for the duration of the emergency only following which he must be returned promptly to the club from which he was recalled.

And here’s 3.12, b:

(i) A Club recalling a Player from a minor league club, under emergency conditions, must specify on the transfer form the name of the injured, ill or suspended Player whom the Player on emergency recall is replacing.

(ii) When an emergency condition terminates, the Club must submit a transfer form indicating whether the Player’s status has converted to regular recall or is assigned to his minor league club.

So here’s what that said. This is a neat trick in the CBA and smart move from the Islanders. It’s also something the Islanders have been doing with a lot of their call ups this season. If the Islanders can prove to the league that their active roster has less than 20 healthy players (not hard to do, especially with a lot of hurt players not being put on IR) then they can bring up a player on what is called ‘emergency recall.’ Remember, if a player is hurt and not on IR they’re still on the active roster but does not count towards the 20 for emergency recall purposes.

Why they’re called up on emergency recall instead of a regular recall is because that exempts the player from having to pass through waivers. The Islanders have done this with Calvin de Haan and some of the young kids for some reason (de Haan, for example, is exempt from waivers) but they’ve also done it with Tim Wallace and Dylan Reese who are waiver eligible. Reese had one year of waiver exemption, which is why he was up and down so much last year. Now that’s expired and how he gets up and down is trickier. Of course there’s a good chance Reese would pass through waivers anyway but there’s no reason not to be safe, especially with all the injuries and lack of defensive depth.

There’s one other important point and it’s that on emergency recall, Reese was specifically replacing a player. In this case, that was Eaton. When Eaton returned, Reese either had to be either returned to Bridgeport or placed on regular recall, as happened to Tim Wallace earlier in the year. That would mean Reese would take up an extra roster spot if staying with the team and would be exposed to waivers on his way back down, if the Islanders later chose to send him back down.