The National Hockey League and the National Hockey League Players' Association on Tuesday agreed on a change in compliance buyout rules, allowing teams to buy out player contracts prior to Saturday.
In the new Collective Bargaining Agreement agreed to recently by the NHL and the NHLPA, clubs were permitted two "compliance" buyouts to take place during the 2013 and/or 2014 offseasons in order to ease the transition to a lower salary cap.
The new agreement allows teams to use one of those compliance buyouts prior to the start of this season. However, the player's full salary for the 2012-13 season still would count against the team's cap.
Players that are bought out will become unrestricted free agents, eligible to sign with any team.
We've got to find a way to win a game. He's played well in the minors, now he gets his opportunity. We tried [with Jonathan Bernier]. The way I look at it, you get opportunities and you make the most of it. That's what [James Reimer] did. Now another opportunity is here and Sparks ... you gotta grab it. Is he ready? We'll find out.
— Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock to the Toronto Star on recalling goalie Garret Sparks from the AHL to start Monday in his NHL debut
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