Important ECHL Offseason Dates

Important ECHL Offseason Dates

The 19-20 ECHL Season was unfortunately unable to be completed due to COVID-19, but it’s almost June which is one of the busiest months of the Offseason. We have protected lists due, Future Consideration trades able to be completed before the deadline, season ending rosters, first day to sign players, and schedule release day, which we probably won’t know until the day before. Also some good news is all 26 teams are anticipated to return for the 20-21 season.



1 – Protected Lists due (3 p.m. ET) and Future Consideration Trades May Be Completed

Each ECHL team can protect as many players as they want, provided they meet designated criteria as agreed to by the ECHL & Professional Hockey Players Association (PHPA):

1. Signed a standard player contract (SPC) in 2019-20 with a team, and has not been traded or released, OR

2. Signed an SPC in 2019-20, and was recalled to the NHL/AHL or IIHF team, and has not been traded or released, OR

3. Had received a qualifying offer last summer for the current season, DID NOT sign an SPC, and has not been traded or released, OR

4. Has been suspended by the team or league, and has not been traded or released, OR

5. Signed an SPC on or after the first day of the 2019-20 regular season, then subsequently signed an NHL/AHL contract, and has not been traded or released, OR

6. Has executed the ECHL Retirement Form, and has not been traded or released.

Protected Lists often exceed 20 players

12 – Future Considerations Trade Deadline (3 p.m. ET)

Teams will often trade for players by offering cash or a player to be named at a later date also known as Future Considerations. We will have an article detailing potential trades that need to be completed.

15 – Season Ending Rosters due (3 p.m. ET)

This list has a cap of 20 players and cannot include players who did not sign an ECHL contract in 2019-20. From this list, coaches will select eight players who don’t sign between June 16th and June 30th to give qualifying offers to and those must be done by June 30th.

16 – First day for Players to sign contracts for 2020-21 season

30 – Qualifying Offers due (11:59 p.m. ET)

Of the eight qualified players, no more than four can be veterans (260 regular season professional hockey games played as of the start of the 2020-21 season). Players on open qualifying offers cannot be traded. Teams are not required to extend a qualifying offer to players who sign a contract prior to June 30th.

The qualifying offer must remain open for acceptance until July 16th at which time the qualifying offer becomes null and void and the team may sign the qualified player to any salary or may elect to take no further action. Teams that extend a valid qualifying offer to a non-veteran player shall retain the rights to that qualified player for one playing season.

A team that extends a valid qualifying offer to a veteran player, or to a goaltender who has played more than 180 regular-season games, will retain the rights to that player until July 16th. After July 16th, if the veteran player or goaltender is not signed to a contract by the team, the veteran or goaltender shall be deemed a restricted free agent and shall be entitled to seek and secure offers of employment from other ECHL teams.

If a restricted free agent is not signed to either an offer sheet or a contract by an ECHL team by August 1st, the player shall be declared an unrestricted free agent.

For information on our NHL 20: ECHL Tournament click here: NHL 20 Tournament

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