UPDATED at 5:30 p.m.:
Marian Hossa's 12-year, $63.3 million deal continues to be a hot topic as the Ilya Kovalchuk contract saga continues. But Hawks GM Stan Bowman said he believes Hossa's deal -- which is already in its second year and was previously approved by the league -- is copacetic with the collective bargaining agreement.
According to the New York Post, the NHL will re-open a formal investigation into Hossa's front-loaded deal if the NHL Players' Association does NOT accept guidelines restricting future multi-year deals.
The league also will move to reject Ilya Kovalchuk's blockbuster deal with the New Jersey Devils and de-register Roberto Luongo's long-term contract with the Vancouver Canucks. Luongo's deal starts this coming season.
But, there have already been multiple reports disputing the NY Post report.
Bowman was asked about Hossa's deal earlier this week at the United Center.
"They did their investigation last summer and we cooperated with them," Bowman said. "We'll continue to. Whatever they have in terms of what's going on, they will be able to answer that better. It's in their hands at this point. I can't comment anymore than that other than anytime they have any questions we're happy to talk to them. But until anything is different, we're just going to proceed the way we have been."
Many thought that the initial investigation was over with. But when arbitrator Richard Bloch issued his ruling on Kovalchuk's grievance and mentioned Hossa's and other players' deals in a footnote, it appeared that it was just quietly ongoing.
Asked specifically if he felt Hossa's deal was still copacetic, Bowman said "nothing has told me otherwise."
My take: Don't get me wrong, I'm not an expert on all things CBA. But I just don't see how the league can really do anything to Hossa's deal at this point. It has already started, and the Hawks made moves because his cap hit is already on the books. It will just be "bad PR" if the league tries to come down on its new marquee team at this point.