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NHLPA and NHL Disagree On Salary Deferral/Escrow Rates

The NHLPA and NHL conference call about deferred revenue, escrow and salary rollbacks ended and it doesn’t sound like the two sides agree.

According to TSN’s Pierre LeBrun, NHL players have left Wednesday’s NHLPA Board call and might be a bit upset about requests the NHL is hinting at in regards to salary rollbacks, deferrals and escrow rates. The changes are required by the owners based on the loss in NHL-related revenue, but the players aren’t keen on making changes. Hopefully, this doesn’t lead to further delays before the start of an upcoming NHL season.

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LeBrun posted a series of tweets after the meeting ended at 6:30 pm ET. He said the call went about 2 1/2 hours and this was just a preliminary discussion. There were no votes taken. That said, it doesn’t appear things are starting off on a great foot. LeBrun explains:

But sources say feeling on the call was that players aren’t keen on changing salary deferral/escrow rates from what was already agreed to in June CBA. More discussion needed.

LeBrun added that he NHL views this as a timing issue. Because the agreement between the players and owners clearly states that the players are only entitled to 50 % of hockey-related revenue, the more money they take this coming season, the more they owe (in debt payments) in future years. He adds, “But NHLPA factored all those factors when it agreed to the new CBA terms in June. So…”

Gary Bettman NHL Commissioner

This Is Far From Resolved

In the end, LeBrun reports there are more discussions ahead for both the NHLPA internally and between the NHL and NHLPA. For the NHLPA, they’ll need to agree on whether or not they’re ultimately willing to change what they agreed upon in terms of salary deferral. If so, they’ll want concessions.

For the NHL, it’s not likely expect too much will be given since they owners are losing money hand-over-fist. There’s only so much time to get things figured out if the league and the players all want to get back to playing by January of 2021.

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