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How much money are they losing, or making?
The Wall Street Journal published a report
highlighting the $300 million in operating losses suffered by the National Hockey League teams. Since the NHL teams are private entities, there isn't much transparency to confirm/deny this number, but there are a few things that seem clear. The NHL has increased its revenue streams, though it is still having problems with the US TV market. Player salaries accounted for 76% of league revenues, totalling $1.9 billion.
Needless to say, these are pretty big numbers. I don't know how many businesses would be viable if they were paying 76% of their revenues in salaries...though in the age of 'fudged accounting', who knows what is really being made by the owners. This looks like an opening salvo in the upcoming labour negotiation - fasten your seatbelts!
They can argue if the 79% number is accurate, but the fact is player salaries have gone up and the quality of the product, along with television ratings have plummeted. They won't make nearly as much from their next TV deal (as if they make a lot already). Player salaries need to get in check, and the league has to find ways to make this game better.
Chop 4 teams (atlanta, carolina, florida, nashville), make the ice surface bigger, have fast faceoffs, bring back the tag-up offside rule, drop the instigator rule, and drop the number of regular season games to 72. There you go, hockey is saved.
I am looking for reliable statistical information on the NHL. I would like to find a business report or databook for the NHL for 2002,2003. If anyone can help it would be greatly appreciated.