The salary cap for the NHL this year was dropped to 81 millions dollars for the league. However, the big impact will come on the teams that had loaded contracts with the contracts starting to come due. Now, what else is going to make a difference is the free agency market will be skewed quite a bit and for some free agents who would normally have garnered quite a bit of money have to settle for less money than expected.
Free Agents Get Lower Contracts
As mentioned some of the free agents that are on the market right now have had to settle for lower contracts. Yes, the contracts are not ones that the free agents would have landed, but at least the players do get to play hockey. Now, one way that some of the teams are working around the lower contract deals that some of the free agents will not accept is by taking and paying out the contracts over multiple years. The one key thing to take away from this is the players are getting to play hockey, but the key thing is they are not landing the bigger deals that they normally would have been landing during a non-coronavirus seson.
Some Teams Have To Restructure Contracts
With some of the stars that are already on the roster it is going to be very difficult for the teams to move some of the players due to the amount of salary due or trade clauses. Well, that hassled to quite a few teams starting to reassess the contract of the players who have been high earners in the past. Some of those contracts have been restructured to make it easier for the players to get paid over a longer period of time, but also is giving the teams the much needed cap space.
Self Imposed Very Strict Caps
Now, the coronavirus pandemic and the potential lack or limited number of fans for the season have led to some teams doing quite a bit more in the way of budgeting. In some cases, that means going even lower than the 81 million dollars. That could definitely hurt the teams that are in full cost saving measures. Look for those teams to have to make even deeper cuts in their players budget and potentially have to build with some younger and unproven talent.