I'm running a GM Game, and while I realize that this post may not be allowed here, I do need more GMs quite desperately.
Here's the rules:
A. This GM Game is a fantasy league, and as such it is not completely based on the NHL. It is however partially based on the NHL, and as such, the rosters will be those that were established at the trade deadline, so any transactions made since then have not happened in this game. That includes signings, trades, coaching changes and any other type of transaction. You may make trades right after you sign up as a general manager (and I confirm that you are indeed a GM by updating the team list), but you may not sign free agents until August 1st. You may re-sign your own pending free agents, however. The entry draft will be held on July 27th.
Trades have to be approved by me to ensure that they are legal. It is generally a formality however as it isn't my place to start vetoing trades that are unfair. You may not make trades with two teams that you own, as there would be a conflict of interest there. However, you may make deals involving cash or the rights to hire a coach, and you may also make three-way deals.
B. Coaching Changes
Again, coaching changes have to be approved by me to ensure that they are legal. You must acquire permission to hire a fired coach who is still under contract or an assistant coach, as would be the case in the real NHL. The candidates general manager may demand compensation, and is allowed to do so. You also may hire junior coaches and there is less red tape if you do so. You don't have to give any compensation. You also may hire fired head coaches who are no longer under contracts.
This GM Game is unique from most others, in that their will be a waiver draft at the end of every month. This will ensure that guys don't get buried in their team's farm system, and allows for teams to pick up assets for nothing. You may expose a player who you wish to dump at any point, and the first team to claim him, gets him. The actual waiver draft is different. Each team will submit a protected list of 13 roster players, 4 rookies or sophomores and 6 minor leaguers who have played less than 25 NHL games. You may be creative with this protected list, protecting an established player (someone who isn't a rookie or a sophomore) over a rookie, or even over two minor league players. You may decide that there is no one of interest to you, and skip the waiver draft. It is worth noting that the second you pick someone up, he is added to your protected list, and you must bump someone off your protected list. The waiver draft will go for three rounds or until every team skips their pick. All waiver pickups need my approval. I realize that this may be confusing to some, and I am willing to explain it to anyone who is unclear on the rules.
III. CBA and Free Agency
A. The New CBA and the changes in the rules
In this fantasy league, a new CBA has been formed, establishing a salary cap of $55 million, however, this doesn't mean that a team like Pittsburgh suddenly has $55 million to throw around. I'll explain it better later on in the rules. The CBA also established a new static rookie cap of $1 million, and this rookie cap will not change. This applies to any unsigned rookie as of the trade deadline. Bonuses will not factor into the cap, but may not exceed $2 million, as this is a loophole around the cap. Player salaries on a team's 23 man roster count towards the cap, whereas player salaries of players not on the 23 man roster don't count towards the cap.
B. Free Agency
The rules for making qualifying offers has not changed. You still have to offer a guy making under the league's average salary of $1.8 million a 10% pay increase, or he becomes an unrestricted free agent. You must offer a guy making more than the league's average salary at least the same amount of money as he made the previous year, otherwise he becomes a free agent. And just because you qualify a restricted free agent doesn't mean he's signed.
Unrestricted free agency remains the same as the age and rules have not been changed. You still must be at least 31 years old and have four years of NHL experience to become a group three unrestricted free agent. None of the other unrestricted free agent rules have changed either. I warn you in advance, in my previous GM game, general managers frequently re-signed every pending free agent they had. This doesn't happen in the real NHL, nor will it here. Most players test the market, and this will happen in the GM Game. However, it is worth noting that there are several players who are likely to bypass free agency and they are the following:
-have bypassed free agency before and re-signed, they didn't even test the market
-likes the team he plays for
-is on a good team
-gets an offer that he couldn't get on the open market
When making an offer to a free agent, argue your case like you were a lawyer. Give me facts, stats, whatever to make your case. The more articulate you are, the more likely I am to say, "Hey this guy should re-sign with them."
Free agency also has to have my approval.
IV. Mock Draft
As mentioned, it will take place on July 27th. You may trade picks, but be sure to know which picks are yours and which you have traded away. More details will be posted as the game progresses.
The free agent list will be according to the one HF provides and will be posted on my website as well. Draft picks will be according to the list nhl.com provides. Salaries will be according to nhlpa.com's '03-'04 salaries.
As you can tell, it's a quite thorough GM Game where you do virtually everything an NHL general manager would do.