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Non-compliance to the salary cap may effect Marian Hossa

Non-compliance to the salary cap may effect Marian Hossa

The NHL, as most know, has nullified the contract of star winger Ilya Kovalchuk for circumvention of the salary cap and he has now become an unrestricted free agent and is able to sign anywhere he pleases.

According to sources across the NHL globe the NHL is apparently investigating all other contracts with similar type contracts including the likes of Chris Pronger, Roberto Luongo, Marc Savard, and Marian Hossa to name a few.

Matthew Sekeras of the Globe and Mail reports that arbitrator Richard Bloch dropped the bomb on the Canucks on the possibility of Luongo’s  12-year, $64 million contract could ultimately be voided.

Tim Panaccio of reports that league officials did visit the Flyers in regards to Prongers contract but nothing came up with those discussions. Now with the recent happenings with the Kovalchuk scenario league officials are apparently now re-visiting the contract.

NHL fans and media have attacked the NHL and Gary Bettman  in this “re-visiting” of official contracts that have already been signed and approved by the NHL but it clearly states in the CBA that they may do so. Section 26.10 (d): (d) There shall be no limitation of time barring the investigation of a Circumvention by the Commissioner.

In my world, a signed contract is a done deal but apparently not in the National Hockey League and in seeing the above CBA rule it seems there may be a loophole or weakness in the system.

There are many fans that are questioning the future of the NHL with some of these ridiculous contracts, rules changes, and KHL signings. To be fair, the only contract so far that has been nullified is the Kovalchuk contract and really the NHL has not lost a ton of talent or blue collar prospects to the KHL. The rules and ridiculous NHL issues I have touched partially on in a past blog seen here.

Why does the NHL decide to do this now? Are they just making an example of Kovalchuk so the so-called cap geniuses like Lou Lamoriello do not get out of hand and possibly have 2 players per team with these monster contracts paying them until they are 40+ years of age?  Do they blame a guy like Charles Wang of the Islanders for starting this all with the Rick Dipietro contract or do we look further back to Alexei Yashin’s  8 year $140 million dollar contract? All in all it it shows that the salary cap implemented in the NHL works but team owners will do the natural human thing to do and try to get around it. In a few years we will see what the NHL players are made of if the KHL all of a sudden offers big time contracts when the NHL can only offer peanuts compared to them. Far fetched perhaps, but the way the NHL is going it’s hard to put a finger on how it will end up in a few years with some holes in the CBA, contracts and a game that seems to be concentrated on gimmickry like the shootout. I won’t lie, if I see the NHL approve a team called the Pennsylvania Purple People Eaters I will void hockey altogether.

Marian Hossa is the only player to have played under one of these new lengthy cap avoiding contracts and I have seen some ridiculous and absurd comments coming from people. One comment was, “If Hossa’s contract is void does his name come off the cup?” Ok buddy, sure, take the name off the cup and actually wipe out the entire season and we will do it all over again ok?

Anyways, let’s say Hossa’s contract is ripped up and he becomes an unrestricted free agent again do the Blackhawks let him walk and get away from his 12-year, $62.8 million contract giving the Hawks even more cap space available and could possibly sign 2-3 more players for that same price. Or do the Hawks reconfigure the contract to keep Hossa and keep him as one of our valuable core players. Before you answer that, remember Hossa is one of the elite players in this league and easily a top 2-way player that works very well with Chicago’s system.  Ultimately, if Hossa were to be let go it would make it much easier to hang on to guys like Brent Seabrook who will be looking for a healthy raise after this season and also Troy Brouwer will be another one the Hawks will need to re-sign.

You’re probably thinking I am off the wall speaking of Hossa possibly leaving but with all the happenings lately one can never predict what could happen with the re-visiting of all these lucrative contracts. It’s unlikely but we could see Luongo, Kovalchuk, Hossa, Savard and Pronger all UFA’s prior to the start of this upcoming season. Imagine the frenzy that would create throughout the league with all of those superstar players available for the signing by any team. Crazy.

As an additional note, via Nick Boynton has signed a 1 year deal with the Chicago Blackhawks for 500k per year.

The Hawks defense core is well in tact with Keith, Seabrook, Campbell, Hjalmarsson, Boynton, Scott, Hendry and a plethora of young defensive talent in the AHL.

That’s just my take,


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An all around sports fan and has been a Chicago BlackHawks supporter longer then he can remember. Currently writes for on the Blackhawks and on the Edmonton Oilers. (If you would like to email feel free to contact Trent at )

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In response to “Non-compliance to the salary cap may effect Marian Hossa”

  1. Dan Rakusan Aug 10 201010:22 pm


    Honestly TKon, I don’t see Hossa getting let go by the Hawks. I mean, by all I have read about the CBA, including the entire CBA itself, the deal follows the rules. He’s not an unfairly low cap hit for the Hawks at this point, and while he is an elite 2-way player, he isn’t as prolific offensively as Kovalchuk is, so I don’t see the NHL scuttling his deal.

    I could see how some people think Hossa’s deal is along the same lines, but the reality is that he will play out the term in all likelihood. Guys like Pronger and Luongo seem like a long-shot to do the same…

    Just my opinion though.

    1. Trent Kondo Aug 10 201010:35 pm


      I see what you’re saying DRak (love the sound of that haha)

      All in all I am on the side of nothing happening with any of these guys contracts but I just can’t ignore the fact that something may just happen. It’s hard to tell with the NHL these days, it seems there is always something out of the realm that occurs.

      I hope you’re right about Hossa staying, I think he is an important piece to keep the Hawks staying at the contender level for a number of years to come.

      Here is a question for you, who would you take between a 2-way guy like Hossa or an offensive magic man like Kovalchuk. Without being biased I take Hossa in a second. Always wondered what the majority of people would choose out of those two but assuming most people like goals they would choose Kovie.

      1. Dan Rakusan Aug 10 201011:55 pm


        I am WAY too much of a non-rapper that DRak makes me laugh, but if I drove around in a car with subwoofer blarin’ , I think I’d dig it!

        As for the whole Hossa question, I think it depends on your team. Kovalchuk is under-rated for his use of his size. He isn’t a violent hitter like Ovechkin, but he’s solid enough to both check and be checked. Kovalchuk might not be as good two-ways, but he does backcheck more than people give him credit for. He’s also a pure sniper. The guy has 50+ written all over him just like Ovechkin. I’d take Ovechkin over Kovalchuk 100 times out of 100, no matter what team you are.

        Now, on Hossa’s side of the ledger, I’d say he’s a bit more powerful in his game, and a much better defensive player. He’s also got a ton of offensive skill (I watched him play his whole Ottawa career and thought he was the best player that team has seen thus far). He’s just so versatile, and I think a bit better of an all-around player than Kovalchuk. However, I’d take Ovechkin over him any day.

        Now, I’m basing a lot of what I say on the notion of him remaining in Chicago. Also Kovalchuk staying in NJ.

        If it hits the open market, if I’m a team like LA, I take a serious look at Hossa before I look at Kovalchuk. If I’m Colorado, I look at Kovalchuk (cap pending). If I’m team “X” I look at whoever best fits. Rangers could really use a big player to play with Gaborik, and one would think Kovalchuk would be Sather’s target, but I think Hossa would fit best with our team. They’re best friends, so why not? LOL…

        Sorry, what a rant!

        1. Trent Kondo Aug 11 20103:52 pm


          I am not a rapper either but DRak sounds quite catchy hahaha!

          No need to apologize for that rant, that was very well written and all of it makes total sense. Depending on what the team needs would make the better fit being Hossa/Kovalchuk. I guess really there is always room on a team for a great 2-way guy and a great 50 goal scorer though ha.

          You’re right, LA would be incredible with a guy like Hossa flying down the wings. I can’t even imagine how well he and Kopitar would look. Let’s not get crazy here though, I still want Hossa on my Hawks! :)

  2. Shane Hoopfer Aug 11 20109:51 am


    I think the NHL is going to scuttle a few more contracts. However I think what will be done is this year will be the current cap hit and money, to give teams a season to re work the deals.

    If not could you imagine the UFA’s before this season gets started?

    1. Trent Kondo Aug 11 20103:53 pm


      Great outlook Shane, and I can’t even imagine if all these guys became UFA’s and to see teams floundering trying to re-adjust their rosters so they can sign one of them. It would honestly be mayhem.

      1. Dan Rakusan Aug 12 20102:12 am


        While I agree with Shane, I wouldn’t be surprised if the decision came down as “cap relief” in the form of a window to re-work the deal, rather than a full season. Pronger’s deal seems the most suspect to me and always did, but the Flyers kinda shot their own foot on that one. Age reasons…

        I’d be shocked to see a mid-season contract negation, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see the NHL put their foot down on one contract before it gets into real training camps.

  3. Eric Cooney Aug 11 20103:28 pm


    I don’t like Hossa or Luongo’s contracts, but I’m with you Trent, the league should have stopped them before they approved them. It’s unfair to go back and revisit them now.

    1. Trent Kondo Aug 11 20103:55 pm


      For sure! Why is a contract in the NHL any different then anywhere else, in all reality the signature means absolutely nothing according to the CBA which allows the NHL to re-visit contracts.

      How about they take more then 30 seconds to approve the contract rather then approve it and when they feel like causing a disturbance go back and re-evaluate contracts. It’s a joke.

      1. Shane Hoopfer Aug 11 20103:58 pm


        i wonder on the initial approval how many of those contracts were July 1 contracts in the insanity of FA day?

        Not that it justifies anything but I bet it could be an excuse for the league.

        1. Dan Rakusan Aug 12 20102:16 am


          Luongo – 2009/09/02
          Hossa was a July 1st
          Pronger – 2009/07/07
          Savard – 2009/12/01

          Just to throw a couple of the obvious ones out there…

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