The contract for Calgary Flames goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff is not one of the deals receiving a second look from the NHL, said assistant GM Jay Feaster.
In light of the arbitration ruling Monday which quashed Ilya Kovalchuk’s 17-year, US$102-million contract with the New Jersey Devils, a handful of other deals in which salary drops dramatically in the final years have come under scrutiny.
But Kiprusoff’s is not among them.
“Not that we’re aware of, no,” Feaster said. “We have not been advised of (any investigation).”
Kiprusoff’s agent also said the league is not looking into the deal as being one which circumvented the salary cap.
Kiprusoff is heading into the third year of a six-year, $35-million contract which started at $8.5 million but ends at $1.5 million in the 2013-14 season. He will turn 37 at the start of that season.
It was one of the first pacts to have a lower salary at the end to reduce the average salary over the life of the deal.
However, it’s not to the degree of many deals signed since, including the Kovalchuk contract, which would have paid the Russian sniper $98.5 million over the first 11 years and only $3.5 million over the final six. Moreover, Kovalchuk would have been 44 at the end of the deal.
The Vancouver Canucks, the Boston Bruins and the Philadelphia Flyers confirmed Tuesday the league is investigating their long-term contracts with stars Roberto Luongo, Marc Savard and Chris Pronger, respectively.
Canucks GM Mike Gillis told the Vancouver Sun the NHL is taking another look at netminder Luongo’s 12-year, $64-million deal.
“We have complied with the NHL request for information and are awaiting further instructions,” Gillis said. “Cannot say anything further at this point.”
Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli issued a statement regarding the NHL’s investigation of the seven-year, $28.05-million extension Savard signed in December.
“We are co-operating fully with the league in its investigation of the Marc Savard contract extension,” Chiarelli said. “The league informed us upon their registration of the contract on December 1, 2009, that they would be investigating the circumstances surrounding this contract.
“From that point on, they commenced their investigation and it has been ongoing since then. On August 4th, I met with two league appointed lawyers as part of the investigation. We will continue to cooperate with the league in any future investigative proceedings.”
A source told CSNPhilly.com the NHL met with Flyers brass last fall to discuss whether Pronger’s seven-year, $34.45-million deal was an attempt to circumvent the salary cap. The league later told them it was under review.
“The contract with Chris Pronger that we registered with the National Hockey League is one we certainly feel was a compliant contract,” Flyers president Peter Luukko said Tuesday.
“The Pronger contract is structured differently than the Kovalchuk contract. And it’s been in effect well over a year.”
In Richard Bloch’s ruling Monday, Marian Hossa’s deal with the Chicago Blackhawks was mentioned alongside Luongo, Savard and Pronger’s in comparison to Kovalchuk’s.
“The apparent purpose of this evidence is to suggest that the league’s concern is late blooming and/or inconsistent,” Bloch wrote in his ruling.
“While the contracts have, in fact, been registered, their structure has not escaped league notice: those SPCs (Standard Player Contracts) are being investigated currently with at least the possibility of a subsequent withdrawal of the registration.”
— with files from QMI Agency