NHL Salary Cap Will Change To $84-88.2 Million In 2020-21
All time highs in revenue and general following have allowed the NHL to increase its salary cap, and that will likely be the case once again in 2019-20.
On Wednesday, NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly informed GMs that the salary cap projects to move up to $84 to $88.2 million for the 2020-21 campaign, per Dan Rosen of NHL.com.
Rosen added that the increased salary cap isn't "expected to be finalized until June," just before free agency begins on July 1st. The 2019-20 NHL salary cap was set at $81.5 million, which was an increase from the $79.5 million salary cap for 2018-19.
This is obviously great news for all 31 NHL teams, especially the many clubs who are currently in a tight salary cap situation. There are 11 teams who have less than $5 million in cap space right now, according to CapFriendly.com.
Teams like the Toronto Maple Leafs, Tampa Bay Lightning, Washington Capitals, Boston Bruins and Pittsburgh Penguins have had to pay their superstar players $8 million-plus annually, forcing them to trade away other key players in order to stay under the cap.
The St. Louis Blues instantly stand out as a winner here, because All-Star defenseman and captain Alex Pietrangelo is a pending UFA. He figures to receive something close to $10 million annually on his new deal, and the Blues will have several million more in cap space to get a deal done with him.
And with the league about to net new television contracts worth billions of dollars, it only makes sense to increase the salary cap. Teams simply have to keep paying their star players what they are worth.
The NHL salary cap was introduced in the 2005-06 season, after the entire 2004-05 campaign was lost due to a lockout. The salary cap was first set at $39 million in 2005-06, but it moved up to $44 million for 2006-07. The NHL salary cap has increased almost every season since it was implemented 15 years ago.