As of 11pm tonight, teams will be able to place players on unconditional waivers. Once they pass those waivers -- and they will, I mean who in the hell wants some of these contracts? -- they can be bought out. Many players have already been confirmed to be heading for a buyout per their teams such as Daniel Briere and Ilya Bryzgalov in Philadelphia and Scott Gomez in Montreal. As for the Islanders, there has been no word on Rick DiPietro. Earlier today, Bob McKenzie said that the team hadn't committed one way or the other to DiPietro.
There's also an asterisk that comes along with these buyouts. The trick is that a player needs to be healthy to be bought out. In DiPietro's case, that's a huge flashing red light, given that he is healthy at the moment.
Technically, the Islanders are not under any pressure to make a decision on DiPietro this year because the special amnesty buyouts can also be used after next season and the regular buyouts can be used in any off-season. But, since there are no guarantees that DiPietro will be healthy this time next year, wouldn't it make sense to make the move now? Or does the team just barely skating above the cap floor need his whole cap hit to stay cap compliant next season? Teams don't have to be cap compliant during the summer, but they would need to have their cap situation in order come the fall.