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Colorado Avalanche

How teams apportion their money under the salary cap

With there being so much talk about the salary cap, Illegal Curve has decided to take a closer look at how the final eight playoff teams of the 2007/08 season apportioned their money under the cap.

Forwards: 44.4% of team salary
Defensemen: 43.0% of team salary
Goaltenders: 10.4% of team salary

Forwards: 58.6% of team salary
Defensemen: 36.4% of team salary
Goaltenders: 5.1% of team salary

Forwards: 56.7% of team salary
Defensemen: 29.8% of team salary
Goaltenders: 13.4% of team salary

Forwards: 58.1% of team salary
Defensemen: 33.5% of team salary
Goaltenders: 4.7% of team salary

San Jose:
Forwards: 56.2% of team salary
Defensemen: 29.5% of team salary
Goaltenders: 14.3% of team salary

Forwards: 58.5% of team salary
Defensemen: 29.1 of team salary
Goaltenders: 12.5 of team salary

New York Rangers:
Forwards: 68.7% of team salary
Defensemen: 21.8 % of team salary
Goaltenders: 9.4% of team salary

Forwards: 48.9% of team salary
Defensemen: 42.0% of team salary
Goaltenders: 9.1% of team salary

**All numbers courtesy of**

First off, after looking at the numbers, it is quite obvious that spending a lot of money does not ensure success. In fact, the two teams that made the finals (Detroit and Pittsburgh), were ranked 14th and 21st in the NHL respectively in amount spent on salaries.

After looking at the numbers, it is difficult to determine if there is a “right” way to go about spending money under the cap. Many teams apportion their money in a variety of different ways and still achieve great success. However, one thing I did realize is that the two Conference champions (Montreal and Detroit) had the smallest differential between money spent on forwards and on defense. This may be significant, or may mean nothing at all; but it will be interesting to see if other teams attempt to adopt this salary structure model. We all know how much of a copycat league the NHL is; so a switch in that direction would not surprise me.

For Illegal Curve, I’m Richard Pollock.