Courtesy of Point Park University

Primer: Understanding no-movement, no-trade clauses

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Evgeni Malkin and Phil Kessel. -- MATT SUNDAY / DKPS

The behind-the-scenes parts of hockey can be complicated sometimes.

As a result, we've created a series of primers hoping to explain some of those concepts. So far we've covered contract types, the waiver system, long-term injured reserve, and the trade deadline.

Today, we take a look at no-trade and no-movement clauses. How do they work? Who has them?

WHAT IS A NO-TRADE CLAUSE?

A player with a full no-trade clause cannot be traded, unless he chooses to waive the clause. The player is, however, allowed to be placed on waivers, re-assigned to the AHL, or have his contract bought out.

Some no-trade clauses are modified, and the types of modified no-trade clauses vary from player to player. Some players must submit a pre-determined number of teams they will accept a trade to if they are asked. In other modified no-trade clauses, players must submit a pre-determined number of teams they will not accept a trade to if they are asked.

The lists of teams to which a player will or will not accept a trade do not exist ahead of time. The lists of teams themselves are not a part of a player's contract. A player creates the list when he is asked to by management.

In no-trade and modified no-trade clauses, if the player does not submit a list of teams in the specified time frame after being asked, he can be traded anywhere.

If a player chooses to waive a no-trade or modified no-trade clause, it is only for that specific situation. If he does get traded, the clause carries with them to the new team.

However, if the player is traded to a new team before a contract with the clause takes effect, the new team does not have to recognize the clause.

Example: When the Penguins traded for Nick Bjugstad, he had a future limited no-trade clause written into his contract that the Penguins chose to void.

WHAT IS A NO-MOVEMENT CLAUSE?

A no-movement clause means a player can not be traded, waived, or sent to the minor-leagues without his consent. In the event of an expansion draft, a team is obligated to protect a player with this clause unless the player waives that right, as Marc-Andre Fleury did in the Golden Knights' expansion draft.

No-movement clauses do not protect a player from having their contract bought out.

CAN ANYONE HAVE AN NTC OR NMC?

No. A player is eligible for one of these clauses only if he has played in seven seasons or is over 27 years of age, whichever comes first. A player who has not yet met those conditions is eligible to sign a contract extension with a clause written into future seasons when the player would be eligible.

WHO ON THE PENGUINS HAS A NMC OR NTC?

Only two players -- Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin -- have full no-movement clauses. They aren't going anywhere unless they give their consent, for the duration of their contracts. Crosby's contract runs through 2025, Malkin's runs through 2022.

Phil Kessel has a modified no-trade, no-movement clause. If asked, Kessel must submit a list of eight teams he would accept a trade to. The no-movement part of the clause also means that Kessel must be protected in an expansion draft. His current contract runs through 2022.

Patric Hornqvist has a full no-trade clause through the 2020-21 season. For the final two years of his contract in 2021-22 and 2022-23, that becomes a modified no-trade clause. If asked during those seasons, he is allowed to submit a list of eight teams he would not accept a trade to. Because this is a no-trade clause without the additional no-movement clause, the Penguins are not obligated to protect Hornqvist in an expansion draft.

Kris Letang has a modified no-trade, no-movement clause. Letang must submit a list of 18 teams he can be traded to if asked. The no-movement clause again requires Letang to be one of the protected players in an expansion draft. The clauses are for the duration of his contract, which expires in 2022.

Justin Schultz has a modified no-trade clause. He is allowed to submit a list of 10 teams he would not accept a trade to. His contract expires after the 2019-20 season.

Some Penguins players have no-trade or no-movement clauses that are written into later years of their contracts but are not currently in effect. These players are eligible to be traded before the clause kicks in, and the new team would not have to honor the clause:

Jake Guentzel has a modified no-trade clause for the 2022-23 and 2023-24 seasons, the final years of his current contract. At that time, he will be able to submit a list of 12 teams he would not accept a trade to.

Olli Maatta has a modified no-trade clause for the 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons, the final years of his current contract. At that time, he will be able to submit a list of eight teams he would not accept a trade to.

For more hockey-related primers like this one, click here.

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