"When the NHL Players’ Association filed a grievance Monday to dispute the NHL’s rejection of Ilya Kovalchuk’s 17-year, $102 million contract with the New Jersey Devils, it ran the risk of having an arbitrator restructure the contract if he or she sides with the NHL in the matter.
One source close to the situation told THN.com that one of the possibilities would be for the system arbitrator to reform the contract instead of rejecting it and if it were reformed, it would likely be to make the cap hit and salary flat, which would mean Kovalchuk’s contract would pay him $6 million per season for each of the next 17 seasons."
It's right there in the CBA under Article 11.6(a)(iv). This outcome wouldn't surprise me although I would expect the arbitrator to recommend the salary distribution to be brought more in line with Hossa, Zetterberg etc.
Hockeynews needs a better legal advisor. I won't go through the entire thing, but 11.6(a)(iv) applies when the contract is invalid pursuant to 11.6(a)(ii). 11.6(a)(ii) states thatit applies when the contract is rejected for reasons OTHER than those specified in 11.6(a)(i). 11.6(a)(i) applies to, among other things, claims of cap circumvention, which is what we have here.
It's an up or down decision by the arbitrator. At most, the arbitrator can let be known with a wink, wink, nudge, nudge, what kind of deal would work.
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