PuckToons: An Extreme Approach to Salary Cap Management
With NHL training camps opening up in little more than a week, a few teams are still looking to shed salary to get under the $56.7 million cap. A week ago, Dan Wood of the OC Register Duck's Blog posted a list of overcommitted teams, which includes the Anaheim Ducks, the Calgary Flames, Chicago Blackhawks, Philadelphia Flyers, San Jose Sharks and Washington Capitals. "The amounts in question range from a few hundred thousand dollars to as much as $4.5 million."
Now I'm not really an expert on the CBA and the salary cap, which is entering its fourth season in the league (don't turn to your cartoonist for technicalities), but I do know there is a Long-Term Injury allowance that lets teams temporarily outspend the salary cap while a player is unable to dress.
While I fully expect that the teams in question this summer will fix their salary issues through traditional means (trades and expensive demotions), I do wonder what the future has in store for spend-happy general managers. Will they ever get to the point where a budget-dictated surgery becomes a cap-cheating strategy? It's unlikely, I suppose, but if it ever does happen, I hope they'll now cut me in on the cap savings.