The Montreal Canadiens' waiver claim of Blair Betts has been reversed and the 31-year-old forward is back in Philadelphia.
Montreal team doctors performed a physical examination of Betts and determined that he was physically unfit to play. The team asked the league to void the waiver claim, which was granted by NHL commissioner Gary Bettman.
"While it is clear that both clubs have acted in good faith in this unique situation (i.e. a waiver claim), I am not prepared to dispute the conclusion of the Montreal Club doctors that Mr. Betts was physically unfit to play at the time of the claim," Bettman said in a statement. "Therefore, it is my decision that, per League By-Laws, the appropriate resolution to this matter is to restore the parties to the position they were in prior to the waiver claim on Oct. 5."
Betts, who was claimed on waivers from the Flyers on Oct. 5, injured his shoulder in the 2009-10 playoffs and it continued to bother him last season.
Last week, Betts told the Montreal Gazzette that the shoulder injury was behind him.
"The shoulder's just fine," Betts told The Gazzette. "I have a lower body injury and the club decided that they wanted to check things out. If it was my decision, I'd be playing but I respect what they're doing and I hope that I'll be in the lineup in Winnipeg."
Betts didn't play in the Canadiens' season opener in Toronto because of what the team described as a lower body injury.
The Edmonton native has 41 goals and 78 points in 477 career NHL games with the Calgary Flames, New York Rangers and Flyers. He had five goals and seven assists in 75 games last season.
Betts has one year remaining a contract that will pay him $700,000.