NHL economics 101: A new Canadian TV deal, higher franchise values

VANCOUVER, Canada — A few NHL-related financial notes before I leave the Great White North for San Jose, where the Kings are scheduled for a 1 p.m. practice Tuesday afternoon in advance of their game against the Sharks on Wednesday.

First, the NHL on Tuesday announced a 12-year, $5.2-billion (Canadian) TV and multi-media rights deal with Rogers Communications that will start with the 2014-15 season. The CBC will still air Hockey Night in Canada, but TSN will be frozen out of coverage in Canada.

The NHL’s Board of Governors must approve the deal and is expected to do just that at its meetings next month in Pebble Beach, Calif.

Here’s more on the new deal, which highlights how valuable live events have become to TV networks.

Also, Forbes published its annual valuation of NHL teams and there was some healthy growth around the league.

The Toronto Maple Leafs topped the list with a valuation of $1.15 billion, up 15% over the last year. The Kings cracked the top 10 at $450 million, up 63% over the last year.

The Ducks were valued at $300 million, up 56% over a year ago.

Here’s a link to the entire list. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman surely isn’t a favorite among fans, but his ability to grow the league’s business operations and revenues has won him approval from owners because he has enhanced the value of their franchises.


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