Blackhawks' goaltender Khabibulin clears waivers Staff

9/30/2008 12:31:03 PM

Chicago Blackhawks goalie Nikolai Khabibulin cleared waivers on Tuesday as speculation of a trade continues.

Khabibulin became expendable in Chicago when the Blackhawks signed free agent goaltender Cristobal Huet to a four-year, $22.5 million contract over the summer.

Khabibulin was expected to start in Sunday's preseason game against the Dallas Stars but was not on the ice or the bench for the game. Antti Niemi got the start and Corey Crawford served as his back-up.

''He had a great practice [Saturday],'' head coach Denis Savard told the Chicago Sun-Times on Sunday. ''We'll give him a couple more days and see what happens. He's ready to play.''

Khabibulin, who won a Stanley Cup with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2004, is in the final year of a four-year, $27 million contract.