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Prospect Of Five Or Six Year Flat Salary Cap Ups Urgency For Current Golden Knights

(Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Last year it was Erik Haula, Colin Miller, and Nikita Gusev. This year it was Paul Stastny and Nate Schmidt. Cap casualties. Players the Golden Knights had to give away for basically nothing in order to remain under the cap.

The Golden Knights have been toeing the salary cap line for the past few years and it looks like that dance is going to get even more difficult over the next half-decade.

If the players owe us more money than anybody imagined, the salary cap could well be flat or close to flat for the next five or six years, and players into the future will be repaying what we’re owed. –Gary Bettman at Sports Business Journal panel

It’s essentially a threat from Bettman to NHL players that if they aren’t willing to make some amendments to the agreement put in place a few months ago, the cap isn’t going up for the foreseeable future.

It sounds like a nightmare, but according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, many are already preparing for it.

I think that’s what people are expecting. I think teams have been preparing for that for a while and even the agents are preparing for that. That this cap isn’t going to move anywhere for a while. –Friedman on VGK Insider Show

The Golden Knights certainly do not appear to be one of those teams who have prepared for it. They just signed a 30-year old defenseman to a deal scheduled to pay him $8.8 million per year against the cap until he’s 38. Along with lengthy deals to Mark Stone, William Karlsson, Alex Tuch, Shea Theodore, and Robin Lehner, the Golden Knights currently have nearly $40 million committed to just six players each of the next five seasons.

If the cap does indeed stay flat, Vegas will have 48% of their cap already allocated and 17 roster spots still to be filled. And to make matters worse, even though it was shot down initially, there’s an idea floating around to lower the cap.

One thing I heard was when they started these negotiations there were a couple of agents who brought up, ‘If you want to do this properly and keep it 50/50, we should set the cap at $67 million.’ I don’t think that went anywhere because I don’t think anyone wanted the cap to drop $14 million from where it was. Can you imagine the disaster that would be? –Friedman on VGK Insider Show

On one hand, Vegas does have a clearer picture of their future than many teams, but there’s no doubt the Golden Knights were expecting these deals to become less and less expensive against the cap as the years went on. Suddenly that may not be the case.

Here’s the good news, the Golden Knights have a great team on paper today and it should continue for at least the next couple of years. No matter what the agreement looks like when the league returns, that won’t change for Vegas. Every team will have to play under the same rules, so having a good team already clearly offers a huge leg up on those navigating murky cap waters with a less than average roster.

What it really means though is the time is now. The Golden Knights’ urgency to win a Stanley Cup this year or next grows stronger and stronger with every perilous word about the future of the salary cap. If you thought the Golden Knights had high expectations last year, you’ve seen nothing yet.

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22 Comments

  1. Maybe our management group is not as smart as first believed. New coach now flat cap. ????

    • sb

      Oh, Management could predict the future? Predict Covid 19? These guys are pretty smart, but not fortunetellers. The truth of the matter is that 20 of the 31 teams all face the same dilema. And the 11 that don’t have fans watching last place finishers. Enjoy the great team that we have. What Management has achieved in three years has never been equalled in any professional N. American sport.

      • sb – how in your right mind, regardless what the cap is, consider having nearly 50 % of cap money invested in a half dozen players smart business – especially with just giving two recent additions over 13 million per year for the fore seeable future – especially to one no other team who he was associated with wanted. That has nothing to do with being fortunetellers – that’s today with all the cards on the table face up. Are you saying all of the 20 teams you referred above of the 31 have 50% of cap in half dozen players I seriously doubt that. The problem with VGK management is they are blinded by the light and think they can buy a Stanley Cup win – very short term thinking with serious long term consequences. You don’t have to look far to see that is the truth – they came closer year one with a team that had something to prove to themselves without millions tied up in a few players. Management can’t buy a winning attitude period and that’s what’s necessary to hoist the cup.

        • Robert

          Like he said no one could predict covid, before this the league was doing very well financially and as the cap would have gone up VGK woukd have guys tied up long term on deals that woukd be very cap friendly for the team. The flat cap is a problem for a lot of teams.

    • Galdom

      Marsh Monroe. That may have been the stupidest comment in the history of the human race. How in the hell can you predict a pandemic. Everyone on this forum is now dumber for having read what you posted.

  2. I thought we were due for a new TV contract for the NHL that would be *much* more lucrative than the expiring deal. If so, why won’t that help to raise the cap?

  3. How Vegas management could miss planning for a global pandemic which shuts down just about everything we enjoy is beyond me!

  4. Maybe should not have infested in or believed. Trump

    • WOW

      …….and the flood gates have now opened……DEAD OR ALIVE…….

    • What has that got to do with anything??? Stop before you show your even dumber than most believe ready. One thing has absolutely nothing to do with the other.

      • Trump said pandemic is fake and will go away
        Maybe news does not get to you.
        Foley big trump supporter if u cant figure it out maybe one of the kids on here can.

        • If Foley was a big Democrat, a big Socialist, I would never support the Knights. Nothing worse than a guy like Bezos, Gates and that lefty Marxist censor loving Zuckerberg. These guys bathe in the tears of poor people, while supporting the theft of the working class dictated by Democrats, this makes me puke. Foley is a Patriot, a great American. If he ran around supporting leftists, I would never watch a game or buy a jersey.

  5. Tim

    Here we go the doom and gloom gang is at it. Flat cap 46% of our payroll spent on 6 players . What you forget to mention is those 6 players are pretty good hockey players on long term contracts. Ken in your mind dumping the Fleury contract and getting Stamkos who’s had injury issues is the answer to the cup. In my opinion anyone with a bad wheel is taboo. Only one team is going to win the cup and last year was our chance and in game one of Dallas when you play 60 minutes and can’t score a goal I new the party was over. Some good advice for Mark Stone shoot more pass less. Personally I’ve lived here since tumbleweed crossing the streets was an every day occurrence and to go from 100,000 people in the valley to the Golden Knights and Raiders is remarkable. I’m just enjoying the ride.

    • Tim not sure why you are referencing doom and gloom that’s not what l see. No one said that the half dozen weren’t good hockey players. It was simply an observation which you can’t logically dispute. The disparity is pay does nothing to help team attitude. I did notice you noticed these well paid bunch didn’t do much against Dallas. In fact l believed you said the party was over and they blew there chance. No one is disputing the fact how Vegas has grown and had some professional teams, that said it could become again another dust bowl in the desert if things economically don’t improve sooner than later. You maybe around to see the thumb weeds crossing the streets again – truly a vegas native..

      • Tim

        What bothers me about Ken at times is this. He talked about a 2 year window now logic would say with a lot of guys signed long term and eventually our prospect will filter in I think Ken is way off base. I would not be surprised if Glass, Krebs, and Dugan all make an impact this year. For years they’ve told us Hague has the hardest shot on the team well it’s time to put up or shut up. To be in the playoffs all 3 years of our existence says something of our management team and believe me they’ll find a way to stay competitive long into the future. Last enough about Fleury and Lehner there a great team and Ken quit trying to throw him under the bus he is our undisputed leader so F the 12 million it’s money well spent.

      • Julie

        Hey, HD! Hope all is well. I still agree with your reasoning and I see what Tim says too. It brings me back to asking SinBin why so much for Stone and the answer given was that he was “subtle” in how helps the team. So, by that logic, Piet only has to show up to the arena to be considered worth his price. I am also tired of the “how do we get rid of Fleury” mantra that must be posted over the SinBin authors’ beds so it’s the last thing they see before going to sleep at night. Management could not predict Covid-19, but give how they had to scramble to make the Stanley Cup happen in a bubble, I would think someone would have researched how the next season would start before shelling out so much on players if raking in coins was a priority. Maybe they did and rolled the dice. But if I know my paychecks are ending, I don’t go buy a new car.

        Anyway, should be interesting. I can’t say I am too excited as it seems like Vegas has and is missing the mark in a lot of ways. I would love to see the team play again. Even if they may be a bit boring to watch (yes, Stone and Lehner are boring to watch even if they are highly paid and almost won a trophy and couldn’t deliver much in the SC) but I still root for them. 🙂

    • Good points, but show me a team with a $12,000,000 cap hit with 2 goalies that have won the Cup ? Adjust for today’s money. We can make a run, but we won’t win, IMOP !! I hope we do !!!!!!

  6. Jeff

    I don’t see how the Knights win the Cup this time around. They couldn’t score so they signed a defenseman who scored less than the two players they gave up (combined)? They have an elite defensemen signed and some above average but that’s it. Pacoretti has never been a playoff player and Knights don’t have that big time scorer they need.

  7. MARSH Munroe – this remark got misplaced and was meant for you. What has that got to do with anything??? Stop before you show your even dumber than most believe ready. One thing has absolutely nothing to do with the other.

  8. You may not be old enough to vote or put 2+2
    Together

    • It was reposted because of concern for you not being able to put 2 + 2 together as you appear to be missing something where logical thinking.is necessary. You were the one, if you recall, who figured it was necessary to bring politic into these posts for whatever reason.

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