2012-13 Lockout Discussion Part VI: The "What Comes Before Square One?" Edition
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11-06-2012, 04:07 PM
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: New York
“That would set a ceiling on salaries,” said Bartlett, who has several clients playing in the American Hockey League.
Dubnyk totally agrees.
“It artificially caps the American League guys’ earning ability,” said Dubnyk. “If that happens, you’ll lose quality guys to Europe.”
Stupid idea. $105K cap on AHL salaries.
This alarmed two groups. One is a lot of NHL owners, many of whom were considered moderates, who are not happy that under this proposal they could no longer include on their payroll bonus money that would likely never be paid in order to get to the salary floor, which was $48.3-million in the 2011-12 season. This means they will have to pay real cash to get to the floor, a daunting prospect for clubs operating on razor-thin margins.
Sources say this owners group includes many who were previously thought to be eager to get a deal but were angered when they saw Bettman’s offer to exclude bonus payments from the cap.
The clubs in this group include the usual small-revenue teams such as the Florida Panthers, Nashville Predators and New York Islanders but others, such as the Dallas Stars, St. Louis Blues, Washington Capitals, Anaheim Ducks and Colorado Avalanche, are unhappy as well. While clubs such as the Stars and Blues have reaped big revenue in the past and have new owners, their gate receipts took big hits in recent years.
Under the old agreement, a club such as the Islanders routinely made sure there were several entry-level players on its roster whose cap hit was much larger than their actual salary thanks to several bonuses. For example, in the 2011-12 season, rookie Nino Niederreiter’s entry-level contract paid him $900,000 in actual salary but nearly $2-million in bonuses brought his cap hit to just under $2.8-million. The 20-year-old was on the NHL roster for 55 games and scored exactly one goal,
which meant almost all of that bonus money was never paid, a huge saving for the cash-strapped Islanders.
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