Free Agent Status

Discussion in 'The Business of Hockey' started by ideawithoutamind*, Feb 22, 2007.

  1. Hey,
    This may be a slightly naive question, but can someone explain the Free Agent status's. I understand Unrestricted means they can sign/talk to anyone. What do the different levels mean? Thanks:dunno:
     
  2. kdb209

    kdb209 Global Moderator

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    For the gory details - see Article 10 of the CBA.

    In a nutshell:

    Group II - Restricted Free Agency

    Any player whose contract is expired and is not a UFA. Any team can make an offer and get the player to sign an offer sheet. The original team has the option of matching the principal terms (dollars and length) - if they match, they resign the player at those terms and cannot trade him for a year - if they do not match they get draft pick compensation (up to 4 1st rounders) based on the average value of the offer sheet.

    Group III - Unrestricted Free Agency

    To be eligible to become a UFA, a player must have his contract expire and be:

    - 2006-07: 29 years old (as of June 30) or 8 or more accrued seasons (on an NHL roster for 40+ games)

    - 2007-08: 28 years old or 7 accrued seasons

    - 2008-09 thru 2010-11: 27 years old or 7 accrued seasons

    A UFA is free to sign with any team. His old team gets no compensation.

    Group IV - "Defected Player" - Restricted Free Agency

    An unsigned draft pick or a unsigned RFA who signs a contract with an "unaffiliated league" - ie in Europe or Russia. His NHL team retains his rights, and the player can become a RFA with the right to match (but no compensation) when his Euro contract expires.

    Group IV RFA status goes away when there is a satisfactory IIHF transfer agreement. If you want the deatails - see the CBA.

    Group V - Unrestricted Free Agency

    A player with 10 or more professional (NHL or minors) seasons who earns less than the NHL average salary can, once in his career, declare himself a UFA at the end of his contract. Group V UFAs effectively have gone away with the drop in regular UFA age to 28 and 27.

    Group VI - Unrestricted Free Agency

    A player 25+ yo, with 3 or more professional (NHL or minors) seasons, who has played less than 80 total NHL games (28 games for goalies) can become a Group VI UFA when his contract expires.
     

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