“We believe this agreement addresses a number of issues raised by players and adds monetary and non-monetary value over the lifetime,” said Larry Landon, Executive Director of PHPA. “I would like to thank all stakeholders for their input and support during these negotiations and to recognize the leadership of our negotiating committee, whose collective experience of 85 years at the professional level has been invaluable throughout this process.” “We appreciate the efforts of both players and owners` bargaining committees,” said ECHL Commissioner Brian McKenna. “Their contribution has been extremely valuable over the past nine months. We believe this is a fair deal that meets the needs of the players and ensures cost security for our owners over the next five seasons. If the league and the team get a contract/try from an AHL/NHL team, the player in that league can report. If the team or player receives a trial offer from an NHL/AHL team without echl affiliation, the player will not accept the trial offer until the ECHL team receives a US$500 development fee from the NHL/AHL team for each call. Unlimited Free Agency – For the 2005-06 season, a 31-year-old player with four seasons accumulated will be an unlimited free agent; 2006/07 a 29-year-old with four seasons run or eight seasons run; 2007/08 a 28-year-old with four seasons run or seven seasons run; Starting in 2008-09 and for the duration of the contract, a 27-year-old player with four seasons run or seven seasons run will be an unlimited free agent. For qualification for an unlimited free agency, the cancelled 2004-05 season is counted as a year of accumulated service. The Professional Hockey Players Association (PHPA) celebrates its 50th anniversary and is the collective bargaining representative for collective relations in the United States, certified for more than 1,600 players on 57 American Hockey League and ECHL teams. The program essentially replicates the collectively negotiated guidelines already in place for NHL players. The Professional Hockey Players Association (PHPA) is a union that represents the interests of hockey players in the American Hockey League and the ECHL, the two largest minor leagues in North American professional hockey. Founded in 1967, PHPA is one of the oldest players` unions in professional sport and the only association of minor league players in a major league.
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