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How Much Do PWHL Players Make?

By Saroj Karki / 1 September 2023 08:58 AM

Source : instagram

The minimum PWHL salary for the 2024 season is $35,000. The mandatory average annual salary for each team in the league is $55,000.

Professional Women's Hockey League (PWHL) is a newly formed league in North America, with the ultimate aim to promote pro women's hockey.

The inaugural season featuring 6 teams is all set to start in January 2024. There are a total of 24 regular season games scheduled for the league.

PWHL has appeared as a successor to the defunct Premier Hockey Federation. Members of the Professional Women's Hockey Players Association (PWHPA) and Canadian players will have a core participation in the league.

After PHF sold its shares to fellow investors Mark Walter Group and BJK Enterprises, the new league was officially announced on August 29, 2023.

PWHL Contract Breakdown

PWHL does not have a salary cap like the NHL. The detailed breakdown of the contract and salary for the first PWHL season is listed below:

  • Minimum annual base salary - $35,000
  • Stipend for reserve players - $15,000
  • Average mandatory annual salary for each team - $55,000
  • Salary for 6 top signed players - Minimum $80,000
  • Minimum base salary - Increase by 3% each year
  • Housing stipend per month - $1500, an increase of $100 every year
  • Daily meal allowance when the team is traveling - $81
  • Relocation reimbursements for new players - up to $2500

Apart from these, the collective bargaining agreement of the PWHL has also made provisions for performance bonuses for players and teams.

All the players making it to the All-Star Game will earn incentives. The All-Star Game winners will get $1500 each, while the members of the runner-up team will receive $1000 each.

The Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the league will receive a bonus of $5000. Likewise, rookie of the year, best goalie, best defender, and best forward will also receive $4000 each.

There have been promising signs in terms of payroll for female hockey players in the first season itself, and it is likely to get better and better.

Highest Paid PWHL Players

The first-ever draft of PWHL will take place on 18 September 2023 in Toronto. The draft declaration deadline for players is set at September 3.

The draft order will be determined by a lottery just like in NHL. The draft will take place across 15 rounds by following the snake-draft format.

All the teams can sign Standard Player Agreements (SPA) with three players. Furthermore, the free agency period will run from September 1-10.

Canadian forward Mikyla Grant-Mentis became the highest-paid female player in the world after signing a one-year $80,000 contract with Buffalo Beauts of the Premier Hockey Federation in 2022.

Source : instagram

As the women's hockey league scales greater heights, some distinctive players will be hoping to get their hands full with some hefty contracts.

Some of the most probable players who could become the highest-paid in the upcoming league are mentioned below in no particular order.

  • Hilary Knight - Forward
  • Marie-Philip Poulin - Forward
  • Sarah Nurse - Forward
  • Mikyla Grant-Mentis - Forward
  • Madison Packer - Forward
  • Alex Carpenter - Forward
  • Brianne Jenner - Forward
  • Kendall Coyne Schofield - Forward
  • Emily Clark - Forward
  • Laura Stacey - Forward
  • Lee Stecklein - Defense
  • Savannah Harmon - Defense
  • Megan Keller - Defense
  • Jocelyne Larocque - Defense
  • Renata Fast - Defense
  • Ann-Renée Desbiens - Goalie

PWHL Team Owners List

PWHL is financially backed by power couple Mark Walter and Kimbra Walter. American businessman Mark is the CEO of Guggenheim Partners.

Walter expanded his investment in sports having already been the part-owner of MBL team LA Dodgers and English soccer club Chelsea F.C.

The Mark Walter Group had previously purchased the assets of PHF, which led the league to be defunct and opened the way for PWHL to begin.

Source : facebook

Billie Jean King, Stan Kasten, Ilana Kloss, and Royce Cohen are the board members of the Professional Women's Hockey League. Likewise, Hockey Hall of Famer Jayna Hefford will serve as the Senior VP of Hockey Operations.

Since the PWHL will operate as a single entity, the league itself will own all six teams. General Managers for the teams will be announced soon.

Canada and the United States will have three teams each in the league in the initial phase. The selected franchises are based in:

  • Montreal
  • Toronto
  • Ottawa
  • Boston
  • New York City
  • Minneapolis-St. Paul.

All the further details regarding team names, logos, arenas, and coaching staff are expected to be revealed very soon. Safe to say, the phenomena of the inaugural women's league have well and truly hit the North American hockey market.

PWHL Viewership Ratings

The overall viewership of the PWHL is expected to soar in the 1st season itself. The league will reach a greater audience via multiple networks.

Prominent television networks and other broadcast channels across the United States and Canada have shown massive interest in the league. If early signs are to go by, the newly formed league is capable of attracting a massive audience.

Source : hockeycanada

Furthermore, the prior experience and PR of Mark Walter Group and Billie Jean King Enterprises will also aid the cause for increased viewership.

Regarding the overall viewership in women's hockey, the gold medal match between Canada and the US at the 2022 Olympics averaged 3.54 million viewers on the NBC network.

There is no doubt that there remains a notable interest in female hockey as well, and a spark of PWHL can indeed captivate hockey enthusiasts.

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