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NHL may revisit compensation for hiring coach

by Dan Rosen /

TORONTO -- NHL general managers are aligned with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman in being unhappy with the ramifications of the League's executive and coach compensation policy.

The policy enables a team to receive draft-pick compensation when a coach or executive under contract, even one who has been fired, is hired by another team.

The GMs are hopeful the policy will be further discussed by the Board of Governors when it meets in Pebble Beach, Calif., on Dec 7 and 8. The GMs would like the policy to be amended or eliminated.

The point of contention among the GMs is that they are finding themselves sacrificing draft picks in exchange for a coach or executive who is no longer working for another organization.

The Columbus Blue Jackets surrendered a second-round pick in one of the next three NHL Drafts to the Vancouver Canucks for hiring John Tortorella in-season. Tortorella was fired by the Canucks after the 2013-14 season with four years remaining on his contract.

"I just think what was intended when it was first brought up and discussed for a couple years and the way it's ended up, I'm not sure that's what we all wanted," New Jersey Devils general manager Ray Shero said. "It's something for further review by the Commissioner and the ownership at the Board of Governors. What the right balance is, I'm not sure. What's transpired over the last year or so is maybe not what was intended, so we'll see what happens."

Shero wouldn't rule out the possibility of the policy being eliminated, but NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said Monday that no changes will take place before Jan. 1, 2016.

"You do things for a reason, you think you've dotted the I's and crossed the T's in all of the situations that could come up, but in speaking for myself and talking to some of my colleagues, this was probably not the intended result for a person in John Tortorella's situation, a person who had been fired, and then for a team like Vancouver to receive compensation," Nashville Predators GM David Poile said. "Right now, there is nothing happening with it, but I think somewhere down the line, at [Commissioner Gary Bettman's] level, at the owners' level, this is something that we should readdress and get this in a situation where you get the right and correct result for all employee-compensation situations."


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