The Professional Hockey Players Association (PHPA) has agreed to the AHL’s proposal regarding salary modifications for the upcoming season and a CBA extension, reports TSN’s Frank Seravalli (Twitter link). The agreement still has to be ratified by the Board of Governors but it is a significant hurdle that has been cleared with an eye on their season officially getting underway next week.
Sean Shapiro of The Athletic reports (subscription link) that players on one-way AHL agreements will be guaranteed 40% of their listed salary regardless of how many games are played. Players on NHL two-way deals will be guaranteed 48% if they’re assigned to the AHL or to the ECHL. No player will make less than $30K under the terms of the agreement which also carries a one-year CBA extension through the 2024-25 season.
While all professional leagues have certainly took a beating to their finances due to the pandemic, the AHL has been hit even harder as there is no significant television contract to fall back on. They are an even more gate-driven league and without that revenue stream, they have had to cut down costs accordingly and guaranteed salaries were among those to take a hit. Some teams have opted to play out of their practice facilities to keep game day costs down.
For most of the divisions, the season will get underway on February 5th with schedules ranging from 24 to 44 games in length. The Canadian division has not yet been scheduled as Ontario still needs to provide approval for Belleville and Toronto while Calgary’s farm team has now relocated to Calgary with that being made official just yesterday. Things look a lot different in the NHL this season and the same can certainly be said for the top minor league circuit.