From The Ice

McKenzie visited General Fanager site frequently

Vegas Hockey

General Fanager was an extremely popular salary cap-based site in the hockey community, but its value really went so far beyond that lone point. So when the new Las Vegas franchise announced Monday it had hired founder Tom Poraszka as a Hockey Operations Analyst, the ripples were felt far and wide across the global hockey pond.

Another creative personality outside the league scooped up by a team; and, in turn, shutting down that site for hockey fans.

“It’s happening with regularity,” remarked NHL Insider Bob McKenzie during a Tuesday afternoon appearance on Ottawa’s TSN 1200. “The National Hockey League doesn’t really provide that service in any way, shape or form for the public to know what the salary grid looks like for every team and the cap calculations. We realize that sites like General Fanager didn’t have it right down to the dollar, but my goodness – I can’t tell you how many times a day I would go to General Fanager for research.

“These teams hiring all of these guys that started all of these web sites are killing us (laughs). Fortunately, there’s another one out there. So if anyone’s looking for a replacement for General Fanager, there’s CapFriendly.com – spelled as it sounds – and it’s a terrific site as well.

“It’s great for the originators of these sites that they’re getting hired, and that’s the goal for a lot of these guys when they do start something in the public domain, is that it attracts enough attention from the hockey world that they get paid to do this job for an NHL team. So in the case of Tom, who started General Fanager, congrats for him. But as I said, for the consumers – the NHL doesn’t seem to think there’s a market for this, and there obviously is.

“We’ve still got CapFriendly, but I’ve got my fingers crossed. No offense to the originator of CapFriendly, but I hope no one hires him. If they do, we could well be left out in the cold. I can probably get my hands on an official NHL salary grid that shows the rollout of year by year for every player in the National Hockey League, but the average fan on the street can’t – and that’s unfortunate.”

On McKenzie’s point about the NHL not seeming to think there’s a market for this information, recall Commissioner Gary Bettman’s 2015 remark:

“I don’t think it’s a resource we need to provide because I’m not sure fans are as focused on what players make as they are about their performance on the ice,” Bettman said.

It’s worth mentioning that there’s another salary cap information site out there that’s actually been around as long or longer as anyone, as far as I can recall, and that’s NHLNumbers.com. It’s been in my arsenal of go-to sites for years, along with a must in hockey reference circles – HockeyDB.com.

Source: TSN 1200

For reference: Covering the Insiders

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