directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Cap estimated at 56.3 million next season

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Cap estimated at 56.3 million next season

Larry Brooks of the NY Post is estimating the cap ceiling to be set at some 56.3 million next year. That would represent an 11% increase from this year's 51 million:

Slap Shots has learned that the Players Association - with input on the number from the NHL - projects revenues to reach $2.575B this season, an 11.1-percent increase over the 2006-07 Hockey Related Revenue (HRR) of $2.318B. The cap should increase at a slightly higher rate because the players' share of the gross increases from 55.5 percent to 56.333 percent at the $2.5B revenue threshold. It assumes the players will once again exercise their option to approve a five-percent inflation bump.

Thus the PA estimates that the cap will be approximately $56.3M - give or take in concert with the final HRR number that will be determined by playoff revenues - next season, an increase of $6M from this year. It means clubs will be able to maintain summer rosters of up to nearly $62M in payroll before personnel decisions come due at the end of the training camp.
It also means the floor next season will be $40M, or slightly above that. It seems like expensive flooring, but not so much, actually. For of all 30 NHL teams, only Columbus (barely), Nashville and Phoenix will have invested less in payroll this season.

Read more here.

If your a big market team close to the cap this year then this is great news. If your a small market team like Columbus then this is horrible news.


The lesser amount of teams available to bid on free agents the better it is for the Jackets. Even with a projected 45 million dollar budget the Jackets were going to have 20 million to spend. Now with the cap increasing some 5 to 6 million that just put a lot more teams, team who were close or at the cap, back into the mix to bid on this year's group of free agents which will not only drive prices for UFAs even higher but make things even more difficult attracting UFAs to a market like Columbus that has never won anything.

Looking at the Jackets are the 3rd lowest spending team this year coming in at just under 40 million. As mentioned they have a number of players coming off the books which will free up some 20 million. However even with a budget of 45 million that would have only put the Jackets at 20th in league spending. Not good enough.

For the Jackets to be serious about winning they are going to have to get serious about spending. They need to be in that top 15-18 range and obviously spending it on quality talent.

Its the old adage - you have to spend money to make money - and now with the right management in charge its time to open the wallet.


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