The Buffalo Sabres have used their final compliance buyout on defenseman Christian Ehrhoff.
The Sabres announced on the news on their twitter.
Ehrhoff had seven years left on his 10-year, $40 million contract with the Sabres. He will immediately become a free agent, according to the NHL.
The Sabres will have to pay Ehrhoff two-thirds of his remaining $18 million salary over the next 14 years, ESPN reports.
Ehrhoff thanked his fans over twitter for supporting him the past three seasons.
Thanks to the great community of WNY, sabres fans and sabres organization for welcoming me and my family with open arms these past 3 years!— Christian Ehrhoff (@TheRealHoff10) June 29, 2014
Thanks to the great community of WNY, sabres fans and sabres organization for welcoming me and my family with open arms these past 3 years!
— Christian Ehrhoff (@TheRealHoff10) June 29, 2014
According to Yahoo Sports, if Ehrhoff had retired before the end of his contract, the Sabres would have been hit with a salary cap penalty. The maximum penalty would have been $10 million if Ehrhoff was traded and then retired before the 2021 season.
The Sabres used their first compliance buyout earlier this summer on Ville Leino, who also signed a contract the same year as Ehrhoff.
Ehrhoff will be a popular target for teams this summer after he led Sabres defensemen with 33 points last season. He has 69 goals and 244 assists in 10 seasons with the San Jose Sharks, Vancouver Canucks and Sabres.
NHL teams have until 5 p.m. today to use their compliance buyouts.
The #Sabres confirm compliance buyout on Christian Ehrhoff.— Buffalo Sabres (@BuffaloSabres) June 29, 2014
The #Sabres confirm compliance buyout on Christian Ehrhoff.
— Buffalo Sabres (@BuffaloSabres) June 29, 2014