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Report: CWHL will pay players in 2017-18

CWHL appears to be on track to compensate players in the upcoming season.

Brenda Andress talks at a recent press conference announcing the Kunlun Red Star expansion team.
Patrick Barkley/CWHL

Well, things just keep getting more and more interesting, don’t they?

Per Robyn Flynn, a familiar face in CWHL media, the CWHL will pay its players next season, keeping with the company line that players will be paid in the 2017-18 season.

Unfortunately, this is all we know thus far, though there have been some concrete statements about compensating players recently.

Though the CWHL declined to comment on Robyn’s tweet, commissioner Brenda Andress said at the recent Kunlun Red Star press conference that players will be compensated this season, per the league’s strategic plan. Andress also recently went on the Tim and Sid show and reiterated that the league would implement a plan to compensate players this year, insinuating that it would be different than how they’ve been compensated in years past.

The difference here between “paid” and “compensated” is a crucial one. It may end up meaning the same thing, but whether players are allowed to negotiate contracts, are paid a flat salary, or receive more bonuses or benefits in other ways remains to be seen.

Currently, players can earn financial rewards and bonuses for individual awards or winning the Clarkson Cup, and don’t have to pay for any travel, hotel stays, and some of their equipment. Up until now, that’s been the extent of compensation.