What's Buzzing:

Puck Daddy

Opening of NHL free agency period could be shifted to June in new CBA, says report

Sean Leahy
Puck Daddy

View photo


Getty Images

The NHL calendar for the month of June has typically gone: award Stanley Cup; hand out the trophies; announce that year's draft picks; and then everyone begins to look forward to the following season beginning July 1 with the opening of the free agency period.

That appears to be about to change once the NHL and the NHLPA finally nail down a new CBA. Ahead of the latest meeting between the two sides on Wednesday morning the Toronto Star's Kevin McGran has learned some details as far as what common ground has been made and where things stands on certain issues.

One item of change will be moving up the opening of free agency to June 15 or 24 hours after the Stanley Cup is awarded. According to McGran, the PA prefers whichever date is later and that topic was "one of 13 NHLPA issues (out of 17) that NHL commissioner Gary Bettman has publicly acknowledged the league has "agreed" to."

(You'll recall Pierre LeBrun reported in September that the NHL proposed free agency begin July 10.)

Among the other reportedly agreed upon points is the elimination of re-entry waivers, cap space to be included in deals (Brian Burke's baby) and a neutral, third party to handle discipline appeals. We know contract restraints and the splitting of HRR and revenue sharing are still to be worked on and have been the main hurdles in these negotiations. And while nothing "agreed" upon is set in stone, it's hopeful that urgency is setting in and things are moving toward progress and not more PR posturing.

On Wednesday the NHL is expecting to finally see a full PA proposal to understand just exactly what Donald Fehr and players are seeking and how it would affect a new CBA as a whole.

Follow Sean Leahy on Twitter at @Sean_Leahy

View Comments (17)
  • Elliott unquestioned No. 1 with Flames

    Brian Elliott was eager to get back in the rink on a hot summer day. After years of fending off challengers in St. Louis, the goalie has big expectations entering next season as the unquestioned No. 1 in Calgary. ''This is a big one for me so I'm … More »

    AP - Sports - 3 hours ago
  • Sens, Hoffman agree to 4-year, $21M deal

    Sens, Hoffman agree to 4-year, $21M deal

    Ottawa Senators general manager Pierre Dorion was so pleased to get Mike Hoffman under contract that he hugged another member of the club's management team. The Senators and Hoffman, Ottawa's leading scorer this past season, avoided going to … More »

    AP - Sports - 7 hours ago
  • NHL: Concussion-CTE link data 'nascent'

    NHL: Concussion-CTE link data 'nascent'

    NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman's reluctance to link hits to the head in hockey with a degenerative brain disease found in several deceased former players has reached Congress. League attorneys have filed Bettman's letter to Connecticut Sen. Richard … More »

    AP - Sports - 10 hours ago
  • Red Wings agree to 2-year, $8M deal with goalie Petr Mrazek

    DETROIT (AP) -- The Detroit Red Wings have agreed to a two-year, $8 million contract with goaltender Petr Mrazek. … More »

    AP - Sports - 11 hours ago
  • Minnesota Wild offer Prince classic as potential new goal song

    Minnesota Wild offer Prince classic as potential new goal song

    The Minnesota Wild may change their longtime goal song to a piece made by an iconic local musician. For Game 6 of the first-round of last season’s Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Wild made the switch to honor Minneapolis born Prince, who had died days … More »

    Puck Daddy - 11 hours ago