Wade Redden and Scott Gomez might get a chance to play this season after all.
According to various reports, the NHL and NHLPA have agreed to open another window for compliance buyouts on contracts — one that begins now, ends before Jan. 19…and comes with a wrinkle regarding cap hits.
Teams utilizing the “accelerated cap buyout” will take their player’s entire cap hit for the 2013 season, even if the player signs with another team as a UFA.
For future seasons, the cap hit would come off the books.
This ruling is in response to situations the Rangers and Canadiens found themselves in with Redden and Gomez, respectively.
Both players are due large sums of money over the next two seasons — Redden has a $6.5 million cap hit, Gomez is at $7.35 million — and, under rules of the new CBA, neither would be eligible for a compliance buyout until the summer.
The problem, of course, was what to do with them now.
New York and Montreal were leery of letting either player suit up in the AHL for fear of injury, because injured players cannot be bought out.
The solution was a harsh but pragmatic one — Redden and Gomez were going to be sent home until the buyout period began. They’d get paid, but they wouldn’t be able to play.
Under the amended ruling, the end result is less harsh for all parties involved. The players will get a chance to revive their careers elsewhere, and teams avoid the acrimonious situation of negating someone’s ability to play hockey.
— Each team is still only permitted two compliance buyouts. TSN’s Bob McKenzie notes they have to happen before Saturday, or in the summers of either 2013 or 2014.
— Clubs will pay 100 percent of salaries on buyouts for this year, not two-thirds.