Essay The NHL Lockout

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The NHL Lockout The rookie salary cap was gutted when teams took advantage of a loophole, adding lucrative "bonus" payments on top of the "maximum" base salary. It began in 1997, when the Boston Bruins gave two rookies, Joe Thornton and Sergei Samsonov, the maximum salary allowed under the rookie cap. But those contracts also had bonus clauses that would roughly triple the base salary if certain criteria - such as statistical benchmarks - were met. From then on, all high draft picks began demanding and receiving similar contracts. The multimillion dollar offers made to a few free agents served to "raise the bar," leading to comparable salary increases for comparable players. This movement was led by a few wealthy teams, like the…show more content…
The league's latest American television contract pays no money up front for broadcast rights. Many teams, especially the newer ones, have also seen a decline in ticket sales. In its most recent offer, made February 2, 2005, the NHL owners proposed a six-year deal. Its main features are: • League-Wide Salary Cap A formula will see the players receive 53-to-55 per cent of all NHL revenues. This is the deal-killer. The players want no part of any such restriction. The percentage formula is especially unattractive now, because short-term league revenues will likely drop because of the lengthy lockout. • Team Salary Cap A team payroll will be no less than $32 million and no more than $42 million benefits included. This range will be adjusted every year, ensuring that players receive 53-to-55 per cent of league revenues. • Possible Salary Cap for Individual Players "The parties may have a mutual interest in negotiating over the establishment of an NHL maximum salary for individual players. No specific amount is being proposed." • Salary Cap for "Entry Level" Players In his first four years in the NHL, a player will earn no more than $850,000 per year in salary and signing bonuses. He can be offered additional incentives: Up to $250,000 in performance bonuses (for goals, assists, etc.) and up to $500,000 for finishing among the top five in voting for major awards. Few players qualify

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