Today the NWHL launched their equivalent to often imitated but never replaced capgeek. Even in its infancy the NWHL has taken steps to give fans what they want and today they took another big step towards that initiative by making the salary of the league's first 72 players public information.
The league's highest paid player is Kelli Stack of the Connecticut Whale who will be making $25,000 of her team's $270,000 salary cap. Hilary Knight, the most recognizable name in women's hockey, will be making $22,000 to play for the Boston Pride this season. The Boston Pride, thanks to their late flurry of big signings, have just $1,000 of cap space. The Buffalo Beauts are the only team in the league to have maxed out their cap space in the league's inaugural season.. The New York Riveters have $5,000 of open cap space and the Connecticut Whale have $8,000 in open cap space.
"I am hoping to bring a winning mentality to the Whale this season. I take pride in working hard on and off the ice and I will set a good example for our team and bring out the best in my teammates. I am looking forward to playing with and against such talented women from all over the world"
- Kelli Stack
All players in the league are on one-year contracts, and the league minimum is $10,000. Here is a look at the payroll for the New York Riveters.
Nana Fujimoto, Janine Weber, Meghan Fardelmann, and Lyudmila Belyakova are the Riveters' highest paid players for the club's inaugural season. Considering the commitments that Belyakova and Fujimoto had to make to leave their club teams in Asia and travel across the world to play in America, it should come as no surprise to see their names among the highest paid Riveters. Janine Weber, a member of Austria's national team and the first player signed by the league, is a true star in women's hockey and Meghan Fardelmann's leadership qualities, strength, elite two-way play, and incredible shot make her a centerpiece on the Riveters' roster. Fardelmann has experience coaching women's hockey as an assistant coach for DEC Salzburg Eagles of the Bundesliga.
In addition to their salary for the six-month NWHL season each player in the league will also see 15% from the sales of their jerseys. The NHL does things differently, all of the profits from jersey sales go into a communal pot and are divided evenly among the league's players. It also appears that member of the U.S. national team will also receive a percentage of any other merchandise with their names or likenesses on it.
There might not be a better name in all of hockey than the New York Riveters and the NWHL has some of the best looking jerseys we've seen in years. Knowing that 15% of your purchase is going directly into the pocket of your favorite player should be all the incentive that fans need to grab a jersey for $120. The league currently is selling jerseys and hoodies on their site and Riveters' t-shirts and NWHL wrist bands were on sale at Aviator for Sunday's preseason game against the FDNY hockey team.
Thanks for reading. Let's go Riveters.