The NHL has made the decision to allow the Chicago Blackhawks to place Marian Hossa on long-term injured reserve.
The 12-year contract that Hossa signed with the Blackhawks became a problem when the 2013 CBA attached a salary cap recapture penalty to his contract. The 2013 CBA wanted to punish teams that circumvented the salary cap by signing long deals such as Hossa’s 12-year, $63 million deal.
If Hossa retired this year the Blackhawks would be hit with a $4.275 million penalty over the next 4 years.
The 2013 CBA essentially backed the Blackhawks into a corner with Hossa and the only realistic way around it is placing him on long-term injured reserve.
It turns out Hossa has been dealing with a skin condition that was starting to affect his health and playing ability. Now the Blackhawks can avoid cap recapture penalties by placing Hossa on LTIR.
I’ll make it clear that the last thing the Blackhawks want to do is play a full season without Hossa, he’s a player that is near impossible to replace. The only good thing about Hossa hitting LTIR is the Blackhawks will finally be able to escape a suffocating salary cap.
This is how the Blackhawks will become salary cap compliant:
- Tootoo and Rozsival will be placed on the season-opening LTIR to bring cap overages down to $0.
- The Blackhawks will put forth a league minimum, salary cap compliant roster.
- Hossa will be placed on LTIR and the Blackhawks will free up roughly $3 million in cap space.
Now the Blackhawks will have the flexibility to add Alex DeBrincat and Gustav Forsling back to the roster and sign Cody Franson.
Franson’s deal is reported to be 1 year, $1 million.
At the expense of Marian Hossa’s career, the Blackhawks will have some cap space to work with. This is a problem that the NHL shouldn’t have let happen and it’s something other teams will have to deal with until the NHL fixes it.