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Report: NHL agrees to two buyouts per team next season


It appears the NHL and NHLPA are getting closer on a number of sticking points for a new CBA, including a key one for 2013-14.

The league has reportedly agreed to two compliance buyouts per team next season, according to Sportsnet’s Michael Grange. This would coincide with a salary cap decrease for 2013-14, which is believed to be in the $10 million neighborhood (from $70.2 this year to around $60 million.)

Under the league’s proposal, each team would be allowed two buyouts that wouldn’t count against the cap but, according to CBC’s Elliotte Friedman, will count against hockey-related revenue.

The NBA put a similar clause in its recently signed CBA. Notably, the “amnesty” provision allowed the Magic to bid adieu to Gilbert Arenas and the Knicks to rid themselves of Chauncey Billups’ contract (so they could afford Tyson Chandler).

As Brough mentioned in an earlier post, there are a number of NHL teams that would be in financial trouble should the cap drop to $60 million for 2013-14. (He also wrote about a few likely buyout candidates.)

Montreal’s Scott Gomez, Toronto’s Mike Komisarek, Vancouver’s Keith Ballard and Calgary’s Matt Stajan are all viable buyout options given how much cap space they eat (all have cap hits of at least $3.5 million per season) and the fact none are signed past 2015.

Buying out players with long-term contracts is less likely, as those players will still need to be paid their salaries according to the buyout formula.

Of course, there could be an exception allowing teams to assume part of the salary of a bought out player.

Commodore rips into Babcock on social media

Mike Commodore
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Former NHL defenseman Mike Commodore may have been coached by Mike Babcock, but that doesn’t mean he’s a fan of Mike Babcock.

Commodore played in just 17 games for the Detroit Red Wings during the 2011-12 season and that was enough for him to muster up some pretty harsh feelings toward his old coach.

As Babcock’s new team, the Toronto Maple Leafs, were being embarrassed in Detroit on Friday, Commodore took to Twitter to show fans just how much he was enjoying his former coach’s struggles.

Things got especially interesting after Red Wings rookie Dylan Larkin scored just 20 seconds into the second period to give Detroit a 3-0 lead.

“3-0 nothin Babs you posing arrogant piece of (bleep),” said Commodore via his Twitter page. “Welcome back to the rink where everyone that met you hates you.”

Commodore wasn’t done there:

And there was much, much more.

To get a look at all of Commodore’s Babcock-bashing tweets, click here.




Friday’s loss serves as ‘harsh lesson’ for Blue Jackets

Jasper Fast, Nick Foligno, Henrik Lundqvist
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Late in the third period of Friday’s game against the New York Rangers, things were looking good for Columbus.

Brandon Saad, who the team acquired from Chicago this off-season, scored his first goal of the season to give his team a 2-1 lead with under four minutes remaining in the contest.

Unfortunately for the Jackets, that’s as good as it would get.

The Rangers responded with three unanswered goals from Oscar Lindberg, Kevin Hayes and Mats Zuccarello to spoil Columbus’ home opener.

“When something like that happens at the end, I think we’re gonna be a better team because of it,” defenseman Ryan Murray told reporters after the game. “It’s a harsh lesson, but it’s a good one.

Luckily for Columbus, they won’t have to wait very long to try and get their revenge.

The Blue Jackets and Rangers will finish off their home-and-home series at Madison Square Garden on Saturday night, which might not be such a bad thing for Columbus.

“It’s good that we get another chance tomorrow,” Saad said after Friday’s game. “We were high on emotions (after the go-ahead goal) and they scored and it took the wind out of our sails, but we have to keep playing. We have to learn to keep doing our thing, regardless of the score.”