The Blues players should have a full squad by Wednesday awaiting clearance to start training camp. The contingent of Blues players are here with some still to travel in from Europe, among them is right winger Russian forward Vladimir “The Tank” Tarasenko. Tarasenko had missed time in Europe with a concussion but the Blues are healthy overall. The understanding is that the league will go directly into the season without any preseason games . The Blues ownership group issued this statement as reported by the Post Dispatch.
“As we prepare for the season opener, I want to apologize to all Blues fans, especially our season ticket holders, suite holders, and sponsors,” Stillman said. “We share in your disappointment and frustration about the lockout and the lack of Blues hockey over the past three months.“As you can imagine, the last thing our new ownership group wanted in our first year was a lockout and no Blues hockey. Moving forward, our aim is to make up for lost time and to earn your continued support … we are firmly committed to the Blues and to ensuring the franchise’s long-term success here in St. Louis. With the lockout behind us, we reaffirm that commitment.”
Here are the terms of the CBA
• The salary cap for this season will be $70.2 million before prorating to adjust for the shortened season, and the cap will drop to $64.3 million in 2013-14 — the same amount as 2011-12. There will be a salary floor of $44 million in those years.
• Free agents will be limited to contracts of seven years (eight for those re-signed with their former club).
• Salaries within a contract may not vary by more than 35 percent year to year, and the lowest year must be at least 50 percent of the highest year.
• There were no changes to free agency and salary arbitration.
• Each team may use two buyouts to terminate contracts before the 2013-14 or 2014-15 seasons for two-thirds of the remaining guaranteed income. The buyout will be included in the players’ revenue share, not the salary cap.
• Players will receive $300 million in transition payments over three years to account for existing contracts, pushing their revenue share over 50 percent at the start of the deal.
• Players gained a defined benefit pension plan for the first time.
• Either side may terminate the deal after the 2019-20 season.
• Revenue sharing will increase to $200 million annually and rise with revenue.
• Participation of NHL and its players in the 2014 Sochi Olympics will be determined in discussions also involving the International Olympic Committee and the International Ice Hockey Federation