The playoff money
The Globe and Mail's Tim Wharnsby does some nice digging today to come up with the financial figures for what players earn during the playoffs:
Figures obtained by The Globe and Mail Monday indicate the Stanley Cup champion players will have 25 shares of $75,000 (all currency U.S.), a total of $1.875-million, to divide among themselves.A player like Chris Pronger, due $6.25-million during the regular season, would receive roughly $500,000 (U.S.) a pay period during the year, a stunning biweekly amount. After the two-month playoff tournament, the Stanley Cup winning team's players would receive the equivalent of just under $20,000 per two-week period of play.
"No, it isn't much," Anaheim Ducks defenceman Chris Pronger said. "If you factor in the tickets and flights for friends and family, you actually can lose money in the playoffs sometimes.
"At the root of it is you have worked all year long to give your team a chance to win the Cup. This time of year is all about the sacrifice and commitment amongst the team for one another. It is never about the money at this time of year, and money never enters a conversation."
It's a huge difference, one which is skewed far too much toward the regular season. It seems bizarre that the most important games of the NHL campaign are met with such little (comparatively) financial reward — although perhaps it makes sense in that top players on non-playoff teams would be unduly punished if postseason rewards were more substantial.