We have had a number of requests to write up the process for how waivers work in the NHL. To be honest, the legaleze that is the NHL's current CBA makes my eyes glaze over faster than a discussion about advanced stats. A month or two ago, I asked the minds behind SB Nation hockey if anyone had written anything about waivers, and it turns out that no one had. However, a fan had.
So, we get a lesson in waivers just in time for the CBA to be renegotiated and change the process. Potentially.
You can find the entire post HERE, if you would like a run down of the types of waivers, and some other useful information. To be honest, it is an impressive piece of work, so you should likely just go give it a read. For those too lazy, here is the part you are all most likely looking for:
This makes things about as clear as they can get, but also strikes me as the picture explaining how to draw an owl. Step one, player is drafted, step two he clears waivers. Somewhere in between, the great and powerful Oz grants them a brain, a heart, and some courage and poof! they are waivers eligible.
Some one took the time to make a fancy excel spread sheet of it as well, and post it over at wikipedia (never to be trusted, but the chart does mesh with the info above, so feel free to trust this):