No more guessing or estimating needed: the NHL’s salary cap ceiling is set at $73 million for the 2016-17 season.
The floor is set at $54 million while the “adjusted midpoint” is $63.5 million.
It looks like the NHLPA did indeed agree to a 5 percent escalator that bumped up the cap from what would have been a very limiting mark. Breaking: not every player is happy taking one for the team, so to speak:
This represents a modest $1.6 million bump from 2015-16, when the cap ceiling was at $71.4 million.
Early guesses were that the cap would be at $74.5 million, but NHL GMs will need to settle for a point in between that overly optimistic estimation and last season’s upper-limit.
It doesn’t sound like GMs were relying on that early, incorrect $74.5 million prognosis:
This $73 million provides at least a touch of breathing room, yet we’ve already seen examples of teams needing to make some painful decisions, including the Chicago Blackhawks giving up Teuvo Teravainen to get rid of Bryan Bickell’s cap hit.
The cap wouldn’t be the only factor in moves around draft day and beyond, yet it would be one of the leading motivations for what some believe will be the busiest off-season in years. Stay tuned.
Want to know more about which teams are affected the most by the cap? Check out this post.