nhl- Frantic Summer
Every indication is that the league and the NHL Players' Association will announce a new collective bargaining agreement, either this week or next week, before Major League Baseball's All-Star Game. The midsummer classic is scheduled for July 12 in Detroit.
Look for the league to hold a draft lottery on July 11. That will be the Sidney Crosby Sweepstakes. We are still hearing that every team will get a shot at the No. 1 pick, which means the Flyers, for instance, would have a 1 in 30 chance.
At the height of free agency, from 1996 through 2000, July and August were typically busy months for the NHL. In subsequent years, free agency started to wane as salaries rose out of control and teams were forced to curtail spending.
This summer's free-agent period, however, figures to be absolute chaos. Why? Because so many teams shed players and salaries last season going into the lockout. Some clubs will virtually have to remake their rosters for the coming season.
High-salaried veterans age 31 or older are either going to take enormous pay cuts or simply disappear. Because of the salary cap - expected to be anywhere from $34 million to $38 million - teams that have ample room will look for less-expensive talent to build around in the coming years.
"There will be a lot of younger players coming into the league," Flyers general manager Bob Clarke predicted....read on...