NEW YORK -- The National Hockey League announced today that it has decided to modify the disciplinary sanctions originally imposed on the New Jersey Devils' franchise for its conduct in connection with the signing of former NHL Player Ilya Kovalchuk in July 2010, which conduct was determined by an Impartial Arbitrator to have constituted a circumvention of the NHL/NHLPA Collective Bargaining Agreement (the "CBA") then in effect.
The sanctions originally imposed on the Club included a significant fine, the forfeiture of the Club's third-round draft selection in 2011 (which was forfeited) and the forfeiture of a first-round draft selection which has been deferred by the Club until this year in accordance with the terms of the original penalty. As a result, as it relates to the portion of the discipline relating to the first-round draft pick, the Devils stand to forfeit it entirely in the upcoming 2014 NHL Draft. The Devils recently applied to the League for reconsideration and relief from a portion of the original penalty, citing primarily changes in circumstances which, in the Club's view, changed the appropriateness of the sanctions initially imposed. After due and thorough consideration, the League has decided that a modification of the original circumvention penalty associated with the Kovalchuk contract is warranted and, accordingly, has amended the sanctions as follows:
The New Jersey Devils will now be entitled to the 30th selection overall in the 2014 NHL Draft (the last pick in the first round), regardless of the Devils' final standing following the 2013/14 season.
The Club will not be permitted to trade or transfer its right to the 30th overall selection in the 2014 NHL Draft.
The Club's fine has been partially reduced.
The League intends to have no further comment on this matter.