NHL teams to receive cap relief for players charged in sexual assault case: reports

The NHL has informed the Philadelphia Flyers, Calgary Flames and New Jersey Devils that they will be receiving cap relief for the four players who have been charged with sexual assault in connection with a 2018 case being investigated by police in Canada, according to multiple reports. 

Flyers netminder Carter Hart, Flames forward Dillon Dube and Michael McLeod and Cal Foote of the Devils surrendered themselves to police in London, Ontario, last week to face charges of sexual assault connected to a 2018 incident, when a woman alleged that she was assaulted in a hotel room by the accused following a Hockey Canada event in June of that year. 

Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Carter Hart watches the puck during the third period of the team’s NHL hockey game against the Minnesota Wild on Friday, Jan. 12, 2024, in St. Paul, Minnesota. (AP Photo/Adam Bettcher)

The four players were all members of Canada’s world juniors gold medal team at the time of the alleged incident. 


An additional person, former NHL player Alex Formenton, is also facing charges. 

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said Friday that the league will allow the judicial process to play out before making any decisions about the four active players, but according to multiple reports, the league has informed the teams of the players involved that they will be getting cap relief in their absence. 

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly confirmed this to The Athletic on Monday. 

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A general view of the NHL logo as it hangs from the back of the net before a game between the Boston Bruins and the Vegas Golden Knights at the TD Garden on Dec. 5, 2022 in Boston. (Richard T Gagnon/Getty Images)


Hart, who is in the final year of his three-year deal with $3.9 million against the cap this season, was granted an indefinite leave of absence on Jan. 23. 

Dube, who was granted an indefinite leave of absence just days earlier, is also in the final year of his contract with a cap hit of $2.3 million this season. 

McLeod and Foote, both on one-year deals with the Devils, have a combined cap hit of $2.2 million.

Dillon Dube skates with the puck

Dillon Dube, #29 of the Calgary Flames, skates with the puck against the Vegas Golden Knights in the first period of their game at T-Mobile Arena on Jan. 13, 2024 in Las Vegas. The Flames defeated the Golden Knights 3-1. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)


London police held a press conference Monday explaining the process that led to last week’s charges. 

London, Ontario, Police Chief Thai Truong explained that the initial investigation was conducted from June 2018 until February 2019 and was closed after investigators at the time found there were “insufficient grounds to lay a charge.”

Detective Sgt. Katherine Dann later added that law enforcement received a call from someone related to the victim the morning after the alleged incident “seeking advice regarding a sexual assault.” This led to the initial investigation. 

Michael McLeod celebrates goal

Michael McLeod, #20 of the New Jersey Devils, celebrates his goal during the first period in Game Three of the Second Round of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Prudential Center on May 7, 2023 in Newark, New Jersey. (Elsa/Getty Images)

She said in July 2022 the London police “elected to review” the case, which she was tasked with leading. That review resulted in new information that ultimately led to the charges filed last week. 

Lawyers for all five defendants have denied any wrongdoing on their behalf. 

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