It is no secret that sports stars across a number of different sports are paid a fortune, with some athletes able to earn more money in a week than many will earn in a decade or more!
While there are a number of soccer stars in Europe and in the MLS earning fortunes and known around the world because of the amount of money that they are able to earn as their wage/salary, there are also a number of athletes in North America that are also earning huge sums across other sports.
We all know that there are individuals earning fortunes playing in the NFL, MLB, and the NBA, but did you know that there is a significant amount of money being paid to players in the NHL, too? Yep, there are some players who are able to earn millions and millions of dollars each time they take to the ice and look to hit the puck.
But, who are the highest-paid NHL players ahead of the upcoming 2022/23 season? There might be a few names that many will instantly recognize and expect to be on the list, while there may be a few that some may feel are unjustified; the beauty of professional sports and the opinions we can each have!
So, without further ado, let’s take a look at the highest earners in this sport and detail the contracts that they currently have with their teams…
Different metrics can be applied to contract values across the NHL
Naturally, with so many different types of contracts on offer, there are a number of different ways that you can look at who are earning the most across the entire NHL.
For instance, Shea Weber is the player with the most expensive contract in the league at the moment, with the Montreal Canadiens star currently on a deal that is worth $110 million; something that he signed will as a Nashville Predator back in 2012 that is still active now.
Moreover, for those that like to look at the average annual value throughout the duration of the contract, then it will be Nathan MacKinnon who continues to top that list. The current Stanley Cup champion and Colorado Avalanche star – the team who continue to top the list of odds to retain the trophy this season at +400 and look uncatchable at the moment due to their ability to keep their core roster – was rewarded for his efforts in the offseason with an eight-year, $100.8 million contract!
Who is the highest-paid NHL player for 2022/23 season?
However, as mentioned, we are only interested in the NHL players who are the highest-paid for this upcoming season, and with MacKinnon only thought to be the 75th-best-paid for this season as his new deal does not begin until the 2023-24 season, there are a number of names to look out for.
But, who are they? Here is a list of the top five players:
- Connor McDavid, Edmonton Oilers – Annual salary: $12.5 million
- Artemi Panarin, New York Rangers – Annual salary: $11.642 million
- Auston Matthews, Toronto Maple Leafs – Annual salary: $11.64 million
- Erik Karlsson, San Jose Sharks – Annual salary: $11.5 million
- Drew Doughty, Las Vegas Kings & John Tavares – Toronto Maple Leafs – Annual salary: $11 million
Lots of money is being spent across numerous players in the NHL
As mentioned and highlighted at the very beginning of the article, it is far from shocking to see so many players earning millions each year that they play on the ice, with professional sports having become a goldmine for those who are good enough to play.
The list above only highlights the top six highest-earning players in the NHL for the upcoming 2022/23 season, however it is important to note that there are a total of 14 individuals (as of writing) that are set to earn $10 million or more for their services in this year’s campaign. Even then, the highest-paid 25 players in the league will each be earning more than $9.5 million this year, thus showing just how lucrative some of the contracts can be and are.
Of course, teams will be hoping that shelling out large sums of money for players will be rewarding for the franchise in a number of ways, whether it be a success on the ice or in terms of selling merchandise and increasing their appeal around the world, but it should be noted that splashing out huge amounts does not always pay dividends.
With that said, it will be interesting to see how the six names mentioned above are able to perform on the ice throughout the upcoming 2022/23 NHL season.