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AHL and its players ratify new collective bargaining agreement

The new deal, which includes better a health and welfare plan for the players and their families plus a new revenue-sharing formula in the playoffs, runs through Aug. 31, 2010. The current CBA was set to expire Aug. 31.

“The American Hockey League has enjoyed a very positive relationship with our players and with the PHPA for many years,” AHL president and CEO David Andrews said in a release. “This new collective bargaining agreement allows us to continue that relationship.”

Under the new CBA, rules regulating the 19-man AHL rosters will also be modified to allow teams to qualify one skater with 320 or fewer games of pro experience as a “development player,” essentially creating another veteran lineup spot.

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But the biggest change is to the playoff revenue sharing. The AHL will now pay a fixed amount into the players’ pool for first-round games and an additional 32.5 per cent of ticket revenues for all subsequent rounds.

“As we celebrate our 40th year of existence, enhancing and protecting player benefits remains our top priority within the association,” players’ association executive director Larry Landon said in a statement. “The new playoff pool funding revision enhances the partnership between both organizations and serves to further grow the sport.”