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NHL salary cap increase could give Sharks significant spending boost

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Editor's Note: Sheng Peng will be a regular contributor to NBC Sports California’s Sharks coverage. You can read more of his coverage on San Jose Hockey Now, listen to him on the San Jose Hockey Now Podcast, and follow him on Twitter at @Sheng_Peng.

It looks like the flat cap era is over.

The NHL announced Saturday that the salary cap is increasing to $88 million for the 2024-25 season.

That’s a jump of $4.5 million from 2023-24, a 5.39-percent increase, the largest since 2017-18 to 2018-19, when the cap went up 6 percent, from $75 million to $79.5 million.

Since the coronavirus pandemic in March 2020, the salary cap only has gone up from $81.5 million in 2019-20 to $83.5 million in 2023-24.

The new salary cap floor is $65 million.

For the Sharks, who have been shedding salary in recent years, that’s going to leave them plenty of space to improve around 2023 fourth-overall pick Will Smith and soon-to-be No. 1 overall pick of the 2024 NHL Draft, Macklin Celebrini.

The Sharks could have about $33 million to spend, even after re-signing potential free agents like Luke Kunin, Henry Thrun, Thomas Bordeleau and Ty Emberson.

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