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09-11-2004, 09:14 AM
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Originally Posted by cw7
He was actually right. The NHL, and all pro sports leagues in North America, are different in their industry structure. They are, basically, oligopolies. One of the Econ texts that I kept from my college days actually uses professional sports as an example of an oligopoly. Which of course is quite different from a free or open market; entry barriers, the input and output of supply, etc. So the arguments that hinge on certain "market forces" are inaccurate, they do not apply the same to an open market as the do to an oligopolistic market.

This is just a simplified version but enough to make the point. And no expert is needed for that (heck knows I'm very far from that), just the ability to read and understand a few basic economic concepts.
While this may be true, I never stated that the NHL or the professional sports industry was the same industry as my "hot dog stand". What I did state was that the business fundamentals are the same. The NHL owners have a product they want to sell. They market their product, sell it to customers and make a profit. They also have assets and liabilities that they can use to limit the amount of profit that appears on their books come tax time. Etcetera, etcetera.

Originally Posted by cw7
These are loaded questions. You could write a 40 page brief or a one paragraph summary, either way it's unlikely to give an answer that would stand up to scrutiny. Far too many factors involved, and far too much info we don't actually have needed to answer such questions. Best to let this one go unless you have designs on starting another un-ending and ultimately fruitless debate.
The problem with the NHL is it has too many teams carrying too few talent. That's why fans have been stuck with the plodding defensive clutch-and-grab trapping system that has sucked the life out of the game and sent fans off to find other venues of excitement. Did you watch the Finland-USA game, for example?

So now, with labour strife happening, a TV deal with a major US network about to expire and fan support dwindling, the league is belatedly hoping to convince fans and ABC television they're serious about breathing life back into their dull product with a few cosmetic changes like goalie pad width. If I ran my "hot dog stand" the way Bettman ran the NHL I'd be out of business in months, if not weeks.

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