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NHL GMs Won’t Get “Get Out of Jail Free Card”, No Amnesty Buyouts

According to Bob McKenize of TSN, the new CBA will not include amnesty or compliance buyouts.


According to Bob McKenize of TSN, as the NHL and NHLPA hammer out the final details of a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA), one of the things not included in the discussions are amnesty or compliance buyouts.

McKenzie writes:

Seeing all sorts of speculative chatter amongst fans discussing possibility of new CBA amnesty buyouts to help clubs manage flat cap. Amnesty buyouts are NOT part of agreement. They might make a GM’s life easier but wouldn’t help owners/players navigate their troubled economy.

Essentially, what this means is that the owners who have been spending frivolously are in deep trouble when it comes to their rosters and are going to need to get creative in ways to dump salary. Some teams will have to offload good players and others will have to find loopholes in the cap to keep their rosters as complete as possible.

As Jonathan Willis of The Athletic put it: ” *Years* of flat and flat-ish upper limit going forward, and no get out of jail free cards.”

This Despite a Flat Cap

This news comes despite the reports that the NHL will see a flat cap over the next three seasons. According to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman (read here for the entire Twitter thread), the expected salary caps for the upcoming seasons are $81.5 million in 2020-21 and 2021-22 and $82.5 million in 2022-23. 

It’s time to put your thinking caps on. This could get fun watching teams try to figure out a way to navigate the offseason that will now likely include a not-so frenzied Free Agent Frenzy day on Nov. 1.

For teams that have a lot of cap room, this news also creates quite the opportunity to grab good players at a low acquisition cost. Trades may be prevalent this offseason.

Related: Report: Edmonton and Toronto Are the Two NHL Postseason Hub Cities

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