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09-10-2004, 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by tony
the nhl is a free market and that's exactly my point. all free markets naturally expand and contract so why should the nhl be any different? the only teams to fold would be the teams that couldn't stand to foot the losses anymore. it's not like the nhl would be buying any of these teams out. as far as having 6-8 teams spending like no tomorrow....they really wouldn't have to because with a couple of teams worth of players searching for a finite number of roster spots there would have to be a salary correction. you do make very good points about guaranteed contracts and free agency. clearly both of those issues need to be addressed if the league is serious about putting a business model together that actually makes fiscal sense. banking is definitely a "what have you done for me lately" business and that's why you do see big bonuses and few guarantees. again, why should the nhl be any different?
I don't necessarily see 46 players added to a pool of 644 making much of an impact in salaries...if anything it just pushes the 46 worst paid players out of the league. I figure you're probably looking at needing to fold 6 teams which would give you 138 players...that would make a bit of an impact, although for how long is debatable.

Ultimately it only takes 2 teams to bid up the salary of a player. A team like the Rangers could build a team of multi-millionaires (like the Yankees) and still have money left over...there are other teams who can do likewise. The end result is you can have 6-8 teams of high-priced star players against the remaining 8-10 of lesser then another franchise folds, and another...ultimately you could end up with another "original 6" if you follow that logic. Kind of like how the Investment Banking community has ended up in recent years.

While that might work in Investment Banking (I would argue that consolidation is not all it's cracked up to be), it doesn't IMO help build a successful sports league. While hockey is a business, it relies on a healthy league in order to prosper...something the business world doesn't necessarily need.

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