Who will leave the KHL in the season 2018-2019

The start of the new season of the KHL 2018-2019 is still far away, but many fans of the tournament are concerned about who will leave the league at the end of the upcoming rally. After the exclusion of Novokuznetsk "Metallurg" and the Croatian "Medvescak", 27 teams take part in the competition. The leadership of the KHL does not intend to stop there, planning to bring the number of clubs to 24 by the 2019–2020 season.

Tournament innovations

The main thing that bosses of the league focus on is the reduction of the salary ceiling. In the upcoming draw, it will be equal to 850 million rubles for each individual team. Violation of the rules entails a fine of 20% of the established limit. This rule was introduced in the NHL in the late 1990s, which gave the overseas tournament a powerful impetus to development. In the KHL, wage restriction measures were suggested long ago, because such rich clubs like CSKA, SKA, AK Bars and others simply lured away players from less financially secured squads.

KHL match

Among other league innovations, we note:

  • substantial fines for late salary payments;
  • establishing a public sports rating of team achievements;
  • management's close attention to attendance at league club matches.

From the season 2018-2019, clubs that delay wages to hockey players for more than 200 calendar days will be fined at a rate of 20% of the accumulated debt. Such teams will be blacklisted, which may subsequently affect their exclusion from the league.

By the end of the 2017-2018 drawing, a public rating of teams will appear based on sporting achievements, attendance, financial well-being and other factors. Based on it, the KHL leadership will decide who will leave the competition in 2019. At the exit will be asked at least two teams.

Candidates for departure

If we consider only sports results, then the main clubs for exclusion will be:

  • Dynamo (Riga);
  • Slovan;
  • Lada;
  • "Ugra".

The weak performances of these teams are also dictated by the lack of money along with poor management. In Riga and Bratislava, they openly admit that they are using KHL teams to run in national teams. In this situation, sports results fade into the background, because the level of the majority of hockey players does not reach the average.

In Lada and Ugra, with finances, not everything goes smoothly: information about the debt to players, the breakdown of major sponsorship contracts, the misunderstandings on the board of directors is slipping through the media. Against the background of the frankly weak Eastern Conference, “Lada” with “Ugra” look like obvious outsiders, while only a few thousand spectators attend the club matches.

HC Lada

Periodically there are injections about the intention of the Minsk Dynamo to leave the KHL rally. In particular, the President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko has repeatedly expressed dissatisfaction with the performance of the local squad. In the current season, the “bison” again did not make their way into the playoffs, which could be the last straw in the patience of sponsors and patrons of the club. Attendance remains the only bright spot: several tens of thousands of spectators come to each Dynamo game.

The topic of who leaves the KHL in 2018-2019 remains open. At least 5-6 teams are at risk, and the final verdict will be accepted by the leadership of the league on the basis of a comprehensive rating. This document is likely to be made public in summer or autumn, on the eve of a new rally. Fans of clubs can only hope for the loyalty of the KHL bosses and the stabilization of the financial state in their favorite hockey squads.

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