The NHL’s salary cap will reportedly rise by nearly $5 million next season.
Clubs and agents were told the upper limit of the cap will have a ceiling of $64 million and a basement $48 million, TSN reports. The cap for the 2011-12 season is a major factor on how teams approach the NHL Entry Draft later this week as well as the free agency, which begins July 1.
The newly crowned champ Boston Bruins are already over the new cap number, according to NHLnumbers.com. (The NHL and NHLPA refuse to put out official cap information, so these are only estimates.) New Jersey and Vancouver would be right up against it.
As we get further from the lockout that wiped out the 2004-05 season, the battle against the cap seems kind of silly. Sure there are no guarantees, but the cap has gone each season since a $39 million cap was instituted in 2005-06 — a few of those in recession years no less.
And there’s no going back, even Don Fehr has been tapped as the new chief of the NHLPA. In this regard, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and the owners were correct in sticking to their guns. The game is better for it. Still, it’s just too bad it cost the fans and those who worked for the teams (including the players) a season.