Information has now leaked that, due to a secret clause in the new NHL collective bargaining agreement, the salary cap for all 30 NHL teams during the 2013-14 season will be reduced to $9.50 per hour, per player.
Players will also be responsible for providing their own equipment and a car-pool program has been set up for traveling to games. It is not yet known if drivers will receive an allowance for gas money.
“Kinda weird we’ll be making less than thirty dollars a game,” said Blackhawks center Jonathan Toews. “No big deal for me, captain duties pretty much keep a guy busy twenty-four-seven. But Kaner’s nightly Taco Bell budget is twice that.”
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman implemented the cost-cutting moves in order to keep his pet project Phoenix Coyotes in the hockey-indifferent state of Arizona. And there may be more to come, as it is rumored that the NHL is making plans to move two of the remaining Canadian teams to Mobile, Alabama and Tokyo, Japan.
Many hockey experts worry that the new hourly rate may be a slippery slope, leading to even more drastic cost-cutting moves like shortening games to two periods or implementing sudden-death style play.
Bettman could not be reached for comment. Several attempts were rebuffed by roving packs of flying, monkey-like creatures surrounding his east-coast compound.