Three of the biggest issues in the weeks before the NHL  and players agreed to a new collective bargaining agreement were the salary cap for the 2013-14 season, the issue of compliance buyouts and the maximum length of contracts. With all three being resolved in a season-saving CBA, here’s a quick look at what came about and how it affects the Bruins’ roster.
$64.3 million salary cap in 2013-14: The league was pushing hard for a $60 million cap, which would have forced the Bruins to deal away a player or three. As is, the Bruins have $57.3 million committed against the cap in the 2013-14 season, and that does not include any goalies. That would mean the B’s would have had to shed some cap space in order to sign Tuukka Rask , but the $64.3 million cap to which the league and players agreed will allow the Bruins enough space to sign Rask without having to do anything too drastic. Depending on what Rask commands, the team might have to make a tough decision or two, but it could have been much worse. $4.3 million worse, to be exact.
Rask is playing this season on a one-year, $3.5 million deal, a choice he made as a restricted free agent with the hope that putting together a strong full season as the team’s starting goalie would allow him to be better compensated. The shortened season already derailed those plans, but Rask could certainly boost his value with a big campaign for the B’s.
Two compliance buyouts: This likely will not impact the Bruins. Teams can buy out up to two players prior to the 2013-14 season without it going against their salary cap, but the Bruins honestly don’t have any bad contracts. Sure, Johnny Boychuk ‘s deal raised eyebrows at the time for its $3.36 million cap hit, but it’s a sign that the B’s have spent wisely if that is their worst contract. Marc Savard  (who will have four years left on his deal prior to the 2013-14 season with an annual $4.007 million cap hit) is not a candidate because teams cannot buy out injured players.
You want to talk about teams that will eat up these compliance buyouts? Start with the Canadiens. They should jump at the chance to shed Scott Gomez ($7.35 million cap hit) and Tomas Kaberle  ($4.25 million).
Maximum contract length of seven years (eight for teams retaining their players): Well, it looks like the Bruins technically weren’t guilty of sneaky pre-CBA CBA circumvention (that’s an ugly sentence). The six-year, $34.5 million deal given to Tyler Seguin  was the longest of three big deals they gave out before the lockout. Also inked to extensions prior to the expiration of the last CBA were Brad Marchand ($18 million over four years) and Milan Lucic  ($18 million over three years).
Not that the Bruins were likely to do so, but this does mean that the Bruins won’t be able to give out a marathon of a contract like goalies such as Roberto Luongo  (12 years) Jonathan Quick  (10), Ilya Bryzgalov (nine) and yes, Rick DiPietro (15) have received over recent years.