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How does Group 6 free agency work?

A Group 6 unrestricted free agent is a player with an expiring contract who meets the following criteria:

  1. Aged 25 or older (as of June 30 prior to the opening of the free agency period).
  2. Has completed three or more professional seasons under NHL contract. A professional season is defined as 11 or more regular season or playoff games at ages 18 or 19 and one or more regular season and/or playoff game at ages 20 and older.
  3. Has played in fewer than 80 games as a skater or 28 games as a goaltender (minimum of 30 minutes).

For players with 2012-13 counting as a professional season, transition rules to account for the lockout-shortened schedule apply and result in lower games-played requirements. The following are the adjusted games-played totals for skaters and goaltenders:

  • Three professional seasons: 69 and 25
  • Four professional seasons: 72 and 26
  • Five professional seasons: 74 and 26
  • Six professional seasons: 75 and 27
  • Seven professional seasons: 76 and 27

Examples of how these totals are calculated follow.

  • Three professional seasons: [(82+82+48)/246] * 80 = 68.9 (round up)
  • Four professional seasons: [(82+82+82+48)/328] * 80 = 71.7 (round up)

CBA reference: Section 10.1 (c-i )(P. 28-29)