NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman has agreed to pay $20 million to a former Maple Leafs player who turned a $2.5 million profit after earning $10,000 a game.
The payment is the largest ever for a player, according to NHL Network, and is one of several significant corporate settlements Bettman announced Tuesday.
The settlement includes a $5 million bonus, a $3 million payment for the company he was with and a $1 million payout for any litigation.
The deal was reached during a meeting of the National Hockey League Players’ Association in New York.
Bettman said the player is the most prominent player in the NHL history to receive such a big payout.
“The players were very, very, thankful that Gary’s generosity and leadership helped us make a great recovery,” said Dan Bylsma, president of the NHL Players’ Assn.
The player, Jarome Iginla, said he was grateful for the $5.8 million the league agreed to fund him and his wife for the next four years.
Iginloa, who was traded to the Buffalo Sabres in March, earned $10.5 billion over the course of his career, and the settlement is part of a broader deal to help pay players for their time on the ice.
He had previously received about $2 billion.
“I was a little bit nervous about this, but I’m so happy,” Iginlosa said.
“This is one I can look back on as a career.
It’s been the best four years of my life.”
The $5 billion payment is part the league’s “Big Four” payments, which include $2-billion payments to former players Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, and $1.9 billion for the NHLPA to help support the union’s work.
In a statement, the league said it “agreed to provide additional support to all current and former players and employees in order to help them recover their financial burden and rebuild their lives.”
The Big Four payments will go to all players and the NHL.
The NHLPA will receive the $1-billion settlement.
NHL Commissioner Bettman is the NHL’s first union president since the union broke ground in 1993.