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Insider Only CBA Buzz: Penguins in comfortable position cap wise for likelihood of decrease in salary cap for when new CBA is eventually agreed upon

Commissioner Gary Bettman called Tuesday’s proposal to the NHLPA a “significant step” in negotiations but when talks resume on Wednesday, it’s a proposal that won’t have the players ready to negotiate the parameters of it to formulate a new CBA and don’t expect much movement between the two sides off this proposal.
“It was a proposal that we believe is significant and had meaningful movement, ” Bettman said. “It was also designed to address issues that they’ve raised with us and to address the proposal they last made to us in terms of structure and format.”
The proposal is a six year term and see’s an eventual 50-50 revenue split that the NHL has sought out similar to the NBA and NFL. What the players won’t like is their revenue share decreasing after year one and huge issues in the proposal with the players escrow, but the one perk for the players is that the league’s proposal does not include an across the board reduction or rollback to existing contract values.
Via USA TODAY, the plan calls for fixed dollars in the first three seasons that would put players share of revenue at 51.6% in 2012-13, 50.5% in 2013-14 and 49.6% in 2014-15. In the final three years, the players and owners would split revenue 50-50.
The NHL’s proposal calls for a fixed salary cap that would be $12 million lower than the projected $70.2 million salary cap for 2012-2013 under the current CBA.
2012-2013 – $58 million
2013-2014 – $60 million
2014-2015 – $62 million
2015-2016 – $64.2 million
2016-2017 – $67.6 million
2017-2018 – $71.1 million
16 teams (via capgeek) are currently above the $58 million salary cap figure for 2012-2013 in the NHL’s proposal and it’s not clear how the cap hits would be addressed to reduce the gap teams have if the two sides were to actually reach an agreement under the parameters of this proposal.
Regardless, Penguins GM Ray Shero has the Penguins in good position with around $60.2 million committed to 12 forwards (Sidney Crosby, $8.7MM, Evgeni Malkin, $8.7MM, James Neal, $5MM, Chris Kunitz, $3.75MM, Brandon Sutter, $2.066MM, Tyler Kennedy, $2MM, Matt Cooke, $1.8MM, Pascal Dupuis, $1.5MM, Tanner Glass, $1.1MM, Craig Adams, $675K, Dustin Jeffrey, $575K, Joe Vitale, $550K, 6 defensemen (Paul Martin, $5MM, Brooks Orpik, $3.75MM, Kris Letang, $3.5MM, Matt Niskanen, $2.1MM, Deryk Engelland, $567K, Ben Lovejoy, $525K and 2 goaltenders (Marc Andre Fleury, $5MM, Tomas Vokoun, $2MM) on one-way contracts.
Shero got to this position trading a top-4 defenseman in Zbynek Michalek on draft day for a third round pick and two prospects, taking on no salary in return.
From one point, Shero gave up one of his best four defenseman who statistically was one of the best shot blocking defenseman in the game last season (averaged 2.32 blocked shots per game ) for a third round pick, 81st overall, who became center Oskar Sundqvist and Sundqvist probably won’t be in the NHL for at least five years, if not longer, and prospect Harrison Ruopp who is one of the Penguins bottom d-men prospects and doesn’t have great NHL potential. From a salary cap standpoint though, it has the Penguins in comfortable position for the likelihood of the cap not being anywhere near the summer cap of $70.2 million.

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William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at

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