Olympic participation, health care and hockey-related revenue are all considered important topics for NHL players going into a key period of labour talks.
But an overwhelming majority of NHL Players’ Association representatives surveyed by The Associated Press and Canadian Press name escrow as the biggest issue in collective bargaining talks.
Under the labour deal, NHL owners and players divide hockey-related revenue 50/50, and if player salaries exceed that split a certain percentage is withheld in escrow to make it even.
According to the AP/CP survey, 25 of 31 union representatives call escrow the biggest bargaining issue.
Owners and players face separate September deadlines to terminate the current CBA effective the fall of 2020. Losing upward of 10 per cent of their salaries to escrow is something players want to fix.