The NHL reopened its team facilities today and at the same time announced temporary changes to the collective bargaining agreement, including the reintroduction of taxi squads. Read the NHL press release below:
NEW YORK / TORONTO (Dec 26, 2021) – The National Hockey League Players Association and the National Hockey League today announced an agreement on the temporary formation of “taxi squads” as well as temporary changes to the collective agreement to address related issues. to the ongoing COVID pandemic. Although some of the highlights are listed below, a full copy of the temporary changes can be found. here.
In addition, three additional games have been postponed for COVID-related reasons: Columbus-Chicago on December 28 and Pittsburgh-Toronto and Boston-Ottawa on December 29. All other games currently scheduled, starting with those on December 28, remain scheduled to be played on the dates scheduled.
The League and NHLPA will continue to monitor test results and the readiness of teams to play over the coming days and weeks. Various factors will be taken into account in assessing whether a match should be postponed, including the number of players unavailable for a team due to COVID, the risk of subsequent transmission of COVID within a team, club access to players from its minor league branch. , and positional alignment issues that can arise due to player shortages, among other factors. The health and safety of all players and club staff remains the number one priority and games will continue to be postponed as health and safety concerns warrant.
The NHL and NHLPA have agreed to form a “Taxi Squad” to provide clubs with readily available players who can be recalled to the NHL to minimize the chances that clubs will have to play shorthanded or that games will need to be played. be postponed due to pandemic issues. Specifically:
* Clubs will be allowed to form taxi squads on a temporary basis from December 26, 2021 (subject to the restrictions of the holiday list freeze) and until the date of their last match before the scheduled break dates of the stars 2022. After each club’s last game before All-Star Break, their taxi squad will disband. Clubs can then recall or reassign players who have been assigned to the taxi squad.
* Clubs will be allowed to assign a maximum of six (6) players to their taxi squad. All such assignments will be subject to waiver requirements, if applicable. No Individual Player may spend more than twenty (20) cumulative days within the Taxi Squad during the temporary training period.
* Players loaned to the Taxi Squad will be permitted to travel and train with the NHL club, however, such players may only participate in an NHL game if they are recalled and listed. active of the NHL club prior to such an NHL game (and no later than the appropriate 5:00 p.m. deadline). While not all players on loan from the Taxi Squad are required to attend all away games, it is recommended that a sufficient number of Taxi Squad players travel with the club to meet their needs. ‘ensure that a sufficient number of players are available for recalls if necessary.
TEMPORARY CHANGES TO THE ABC
The NHLPA and the NHL have also agreed to the following changes to the CBA, effective December 26, 2021 and continuing through the remainder of the 2021-22 season (a full copy of the CBA changes can be found in the attached):
* A club will be allowed to recall a player in accordance with the list emergency exception with an average amount (if calculated excluding the performance bonus in Schedule 5) not exceeding $ 1,000,000. For clarity, any performance bonus earned by a recalled player in accordance with section 50.10 (e) will be included in determining whether a club’s performance bonus is exceeded for the 2022-2023 season.
* If a club has less than two (2) goaltenders on its active roster who are able to play in the club’s next regular season game due to injury or illness, it will be permitted to recall a goaltender immediately without the club playing the previous game with less than two (2) goalkeepers.
In addition, if both goaltenders on a club’s roster are incapacitated during an NHL game, the club will also be entitled to immediately recall a goaltender for the purpose of playing in such game. of the NHL.
* If a club has less than twelve (12) forwards or six (6) defenders on their active roster who are able to play in their next regular season game specifically due to unavailability of players due to the COVID protocol – 19, this club be allowed to recall players from deficient positions without the club having to play the previous game with less than 18 skaters.