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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

The 25 Highest-Paid NHL Forwards

  • Only $4.5 million separate the first and twenty-fifth highest earners.
  • Three-time MVP Connor McDavid is the third highest-paid forward.
Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Despite their undoubtable value on the ice, NHL forwards earn considerably less compared to equivalent high-scoring positions in other sports, with a mere $4.5 million difference between the league’s top earner and the 25th in the pay rankings.

Auston Matthews, the 2021-22 NHL MVP, takes the crown as the highest-paid NHL forward making over $13.25 million per year. In ’23, Matthews signed a four-year, $53 million contract extension to remain with the Maple Leafs.

Trailing Matthews is Avalanche star Nathan McKinnon who brings in $12.6 million annually after signing a long term eight-year, $100.8 million contract extension in 2022.

Coming in less than $1 million behind the highest-earner, three-time MVP Connor McDavid takes the third position earning $12.5 million yearly.

Rounding out the top five are Artemi Panarin and Elias Pettersson making $11.64 million and $11.6 million, respectively. Panarin is set to be a free agent again in 2026 while Pettersson recently signed a long term deal keeping him in Vancouver until at least 2032.

The Highest-Paid Forwards

Here is the full list of the 25 highest-paid NHL forwards by average salary. The list was compiled using data from Spotrac.

  • Updated: April 24, 2024
  • Will be updated again: July 1, 2024
1Auston MatthewsToronto Maple Leafs$13.25 million
2 Nathan MacKinnonColorado Avalanche$12.6 million
3 Connor McDavidEdmonton Oilers$12.5 million
4Artemi PanarinNew York Rangers$11.64 million
5 Elias PetterssonVancouver Canucks$11.6 million
6William NylanderToronto Maple Leafs$11.5 million
7 David PastrnakBoston Bruins$11.25 million
8John TavaresToronto Maple Leafs$11 million
9Mitchell MarnerToronto Maple Leafs$10.9 million
10 Jonathan HuberdeauCalgary Flames$10.5 million
T-11Aleksander BarkovFlorida Panthers$10 million
T-11Jack EichelVegas Golden Knights$10 million
13Tyler SeguinDallas Stars$9.85 million
T-14Sebastian AhoCarolina Hurricanes$9.75 million
T-14Johnny GaudreauColumbus Blue Jackets$9.75 million
T-16Jamie BennDallas Stars$9.5 million
T-16Matthew TkachukFlorida Panthers$9.5 million
T-16Alex OvechkinWashington Capitals$9.5 million
T-16Brayden PointTampa Bay Lightning$9.5 million
T-16Nikita KucherovTampa Bay Lightning$9.5 million
T-16Mark StoneVegas Golden Knights$9.5 million
22 Mikko RantanenColorado Avalanche$9.25 million
23Nicklas BackstromWashington Capitals$9.2 million
24Matthew BarzalNew York Islanders$9.15 million
T-25Jeff SkinnerBuffalo Sabres$9 million
T-25Kirill KaprizovMinnesota Wild$9 million
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