NHL salary cap goes to $82.5M for 2022-23, plus recap of GM Meetings

gary bettman nhl revenue
Feb 4, 2022; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; NHL commissioner Gary Bettman speaks with media prior to the 2022 NHL All-Star Game Skills Competition at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Lucas Peltier-USA TODAY Sports

The NHL salary cap will go up for the first time in three years, getting a $1 million boost to $82.5 million for the 2022-23 season.

General managers were informed of the increase Tuesday at the league’s GM meetings in Manalapan, Fla. The meetings are usually done annually but hadn’t been held since March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

NHL Salary Cap goes up

The NHL had held firm to a cap of $81.5 million through the pandemic due to lost revenues. The cap was last increased by $2 million ahead of the 2019-20 season.

Also Tuesday, the NHL said $1 billion debt held by the players will be repaid to owners by the end of the 2024-25 season, allowing for a significant increase to the cap in 2025-26.

The league took out a $1 billion loan in January 2021 to be split among the teams in the event of cash-flow problems caused by the pandemic.

Highlights of GM Meetings

nhl gm meetings
Jun 19, 2019; Las Vegas, NV, USA; NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman is pictured on the red carpet during the 2019 NHL Awards at Mandalay Bay. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
  • Ken Holland of the Edmonton Oilers tabled the discussion regarding the use of LTIR and having a salary cap in the playoffs. According to Pierre LeBrun, this will be addressed again at the NHL Draft in Montreal, plus Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly has already met with the NHLPA to discuss this topic.
  • The NHL will look to avoid another situation like what occurred with the Vegas Golden Knights trading Evgenii Dadonov despite him having a no-trade clause that didn’t allow a move to the Anaheim Ducks. Per the NHL, they are working on a database of no-trade clauses to be filed with NHL Central Registry. Publicly both PuckPedia and CapFriendly have this information.
  • The 2024 World Cup of Hockey will only have national teams playing but all teams to participate have to be decided.
  • Officiating was discussed, but no changes are expected. Many GM’s wanted to understand the standard for calls in the playoffs.
  • Sheldon Kennedy and Kim Davis addressed the GM’s to discuss NHL’s Respect Hockey program.
  • An open forum regarding trade talks leaks was addressed by Blackhawks GM Kyle Davidson regarding leaks out of Chicago regarding discussions had with the Toronto Maple Leafs.
  • At this time the NHL does not anticipate any restrictions on drafting Russian players.

–Field Level Media contributed to this report.