Forbes Announces NHL Team Valuations

In their latest The Business of Hockey: NHL Team Values, Forbes reports that:

The average hockey team is now worth $240 million, 5% more than last year due to a 5% increase in revenue during the 2010-11 season, to an average of $103 million per team. The sport’s popularity on television (NBC’s broadcast of the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic was the most-viewed NHL regular season game in 36 years with an average of 4.5 million watching during prime time) and online (average monthly unique visitors to NHL.com plus all 30 NHL team Web sites has increased to a record 22 million) is up, as is the revenue from those platforms.

The report goes on to state that the profit margins for the league’s operating income is 21-percent lower than it was last season; pinning much of the blame on the league’s salary cap that in their words is “set too high for some teams to be profitable.”

According to their numbers, the Ottawa Senators’ current franchise value is $201 million – up 3-percent from last season and more than double the price that Eugene Melnyk paid when he bought the team for $92 million in 2003. This $201 million value ranks the Senators as having the seventeenth highest value in the NHL.

If the numbers are to be believed, the organization generated $2.8 million in operating income last year. After two years of losing nearly $3.8 million, I suppose this could be seen as a positive but I can already envision the line of fans who will use this opportunity to bemoan the lack of a new scoreboard.

Here are some other figures to kick around:

  • Operating Income: $2.8 M
  • Debt/Value: 65%
  • Player Expenses: $57 M
  • Gate Receipts: $46 M
  • Revenue per Fan: $70

And here’s the explanation for the Senators’ profit:

The Senators turned a slight profit last season despite missing the playoffs and finishing with a disappointing 74 points. Credit the strong Canadian dollar and near sellout crowds at Scotiabank Place. Team owner Eugene Melnyk also the arena, which has many top events during the year, such as Mariah Carey, Professional Bull Riding and Disney Princess Classics. The Senators average ticket price is $60, which ranks in the middle of the league, but far below fellow Canadian teams like the Toronto Maple Leafs ($116) and Montreal Canadiens ($90), who have the top prices in the NHL.

So what does any of this mean?

Well, in consideration of the fact that Gary Bettman repudiates Forbes‘ numbers all the time and there were those Fan 590 allegations that the Senators reportedly lost approximately $14 million last season, I don’t know what to believe. I suppose I’m a tad skeptical since I can’t fathom a scenario in which the Senators had one of the top ten NHL operating incomes last year.

Filatov Injury

SenatorsExtra.com has this photo of Nikita Filatov up on their website. Sportsnet’s Ian Mendes (@ian_mendes) is reporting that Filatov’s nose isn’t completely broken. X-ray revealed fracture. Filatov says he should be able to play tomorrow vs DAL. Reason he didn’t come back vs WPG was headache/dizziness from hit.

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