PALM BEACH – After the National Hockey League made threats, Commissioner Gary Pittman confirmed after the general managers meeting that the 2022 draft will indeed take place in Montreal. But this second day of meetings basically allowed us to discuss the possibility of maintaining the salary cap during qualifying.
Let’s settle the draft first.
“Yes, we are going to Montreal and we are excited to do it in person and to be able to present it in front of the fans in the Coliseum,” Bateman said.
Canadians fans hardly need to be reminded, but the Tampa Bay Lightning took advantage of Nikita Kucherov’s return to the playoffs to lift the Stanley Cup. But the current system doesn’t seem to bother NHL GMs much.
We had a good discussion because the general impression among the general managers is that it’s not really a problem. But the perception (among proponents) is different. Of course, modifications may be possible, but this is not seen as a problem. Commissioner Gary Bateman commented, “Nobody in this room thought it was a terrible and so problematic situation.”
Leaders sometimes try to be creative, but the system works well. There are no major violations. “It is not an urgent issue,” he added.
Logically, the NHL would have to make sure that teams don’t invent injuries or exaggerate their severity.
Each year, as the transaction deadline approaches, we contact teams to get a picture of the list of those infected. A second medical opinion is sometimes requested when the condition requires it. Buttman’s right arm Bill Daly said, “We’re making sure the injuries are real and we haven’t had a big problem with that.
It’s not easy to make changes in part because teams can have more players on their rosters.
Currently, the pressure on NHL teams is at a very high level. Because of the repercussions of this pandemic, the salary cap increase has been postponed, and it will only be $ 1 million for the next season, for a total of $ 82.5 million.
Another key element in this equation is the reimbursement that players must pay to the NHL for the season that has been cut short during the pandemic.
“When the payment is made at the end of 2024-2025, the maximum salary can rise even more. This is our forecast and it has been good so far. But we also know that unexpected things are happening in the world,” explained Bateman.
However, the NHL commissioner seemed very happy to determine that his department’s revenue should exceed five billion, which is honoring a forecast made in December.
“All this given the challenges posed by Canadian restrictions (on the number of supporters),” he added.
There are no restrictions for aspiring Russian stalkers
On a completely different note, 32 teams also discussed Russia’s bid. The invasion of Ukraine could have resulted in the NHL wanting to send a message during the draft.
“It’s a situation that could change between now and the run-off, we’ll see then. But it is not our intention now to impose some limitations on the formulation of Russian expectations,” Daly replied.
Internationally, the general managers have begun to develop a plan to introduce a new World Cup. The formula should go to teams from specific countries rather than regions of the world.
“These are very preliminary plans, we have to speed up the pace because we are a little behind,” Daly admitted.
Among other issues, it is clear that refereeing has been addressed through various topics, including the way in which new officials – who are increasingly becoming former players – are being trained.
“We listened to a report and disagreed with what was made public. Stephen (Wolcolm, Director of Judging) gave a presentation that was very clear but nothing was controversial, and I don’t understand how it all turned out that way,” Bateman said, referring to the tweet Agent Alan Walsh, according to which Tamman would have stated, would be a heavy fine being imposed on GMs who criticize arbitration.
Bettman and Daly also confirmed that the NHL wants to implement a central registry of no-move clauses in player contracts to avoid the chaos that leads to Evgenii Dadonov’s trade being cancelled.
In closing, the NHL commissioner opened his press conference by highlighting the contribution of Senate owner Eugene Melnick, who passed away. He expressed his immense passion for hockey, and Batman respected him even if it led to some differences of opinion.
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