What PHF’s Meteoric Salary Increase Means for Women’s Hockey and Women’s Sports

On Wednesday, news that the Premier Hockey Association, the women’s hockey league formerly known as the NWHL, raised the salary cap to $1.5 million per team for the 2023-24 season resonated beyond the world of women’s hockey.

Come the same day as the WNBA announced it was postponing expansion beyond the previously stated preferred calendar, it was hard for many to avoid realizing that the new salary caps for the younger league – still less than a decade old – would exceed that. The WNBA cap of $1,463,200 by 2024 under the current collective bargaining agreement.

This does not mean that the two leagues are in competition. Instead, it’s part of the same women’s sport growth story that brought the National Women’s Football League to its feet even when the NWSL took abuse into account. Indeed, in the first collective bargaining agreement signed between the NWSL and NWSLPA earlier this year, the salary cap increased from $682,500 in 2021 to $1.1 million in 2022. 2020. The WNBA’s lead on this front is now gone.

While the $75 million capital increase the WNBA made in early 2022 didn’t change any of the league’s salaries – although insiders claim the increase itself helped pay off the agreed increase in the 2020 CBA – it’s notable that PHF has clearly tied this increase. as a salary to the $25 million cash flow agreed upon by the league owners last January.

“This historic salary cap increase reflects the strength of our league and evolving business model and supports an enhanced player experience that brought full health benefits, facility upgrades, league expansion and a record 84 game schedule over the past year,” Reagan said. PHF Commissioner Carey said on Wednesday. “We know how dedicated and dedicated these players are to creating more opportunities for women in sport, and PHF is committed to prioritizing our support of these talented and talented players on and off the ice. Players, alumni, staff, coaches, volunteers, partners, owners and passionate Our fans are working to ensure that full-time professional hockey is a career path for women.”

But PHF is fueling its growth far beyond just money from current owners. According to the league, a two-year deal with ESPN+ and TSN provides the widest possible audience for PHF, while the financial part of these partnerships comes at a time when overall sponsorship dollars are high.

The good news doesn’t stop there. PHF announced on Thursday that All Star Weekend will be held in Toronto with a three-team tournament featuring American, Canadian and global players. Teams will be announced in the coming weeks.

The total picture is of a league fulfilling the rapid growth promises of Carey, who assumed the commissioner role in April 2022.

“We’re not going to stop here and we’re proud to continue our record breaking new records in professional women’s hockey,” Carey said. “PHF was the first league to pay back its players in 2015, and our commitment to building the best home for professional women’s hockey requires that we continue to move forward. More financial opportunities for athletes are part of the new PHF era. We are doing our work and seeing the results,” he said.

And with these results, she is putting pressure on other women’s leagues to increase their salaries as well. Because all over women’s sports people are becoming aware of what’s going on at PHF.

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