What is an Entry Level Slide?
If a player who is signed to an entry-level contract and is 18 or 19 years of age (as of September 15 of the signing year), does not play in a minimum of 10 NHL games (including both regular season and playoffs; AHL games do not count), their contract is considered to ‘slide’, or extend, by one year. For example, if a player signed an ELC for three seasons from 2015-16 to 2017-2018, and their contract slides, their contract is now effective from 2016-17 to 2018-19. An exception to this rule is that if the player is 19 on September 15 of the first year of their contract, and turns 20 between September 16 and December 31, their contract does not slide.
Players who sign at 18 years old are eligible to have their contracted extended for 2 seasons. This extension does not apply if the player turns 20 between September 16 and December 31 in his signing year. Signing bonuses do not slide, and are paid to the player regardless of a slide, this causes the annual average of the players contract to change, and therefore the cap hit decreases for this player
I should have been clearer in my post. I wasn't implying paid as in like an actual salary, but a stipend is a form of payment meant to get around the "student athlete" rules (which needs to increase if they insist on calling them that). So not "free" but not much either. If you signed an ELC however, and it slid for a year, you still get the signing bonus, just not the actual AHL salary.
I understand your point about not judging Russia because of wanting to introduce a draft law in reference to the CHL/NHL transfer agreement, the situation is a bit different though. Both need to keep their leagues running strong, and make money, which is why we see the 18-19 year olds go back to junior if they don't make the NHL roster, as they, the top players, draw crowds. I would like to see more exceptions based on stats over a 2-3 year period, but another year or 2 in junior with higher minutes is what most of these players would benefit from, also considering the education funds, perks of billet families, etc.. Where as Russia is wanting to punish their U23 players if they leave, instead of offering incentive to stay.