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12-28-2012, 04:45 PM
  #44
sandysan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by regehr View Post
I think the NHL can support 28 teams (19 US, 9 Canada) -- 4 divisions of 7.

looking at the numbers there are 21 teams who sold out 96% or more of their home games (all of which averaged at least 16.7k/game with the exception of Winnipeg, whose arena only holds 15k):

1 PHI - 107.4%
2 CHI - 105%
3 TOR - 103.7%
4 PIT - 102.7%
5 VAN - 102.5%
6 WSH - 101.3%
7 OTT - 101.1%
8 DET - 100.7%
9 BOS - 100%
9 CGY - 100%
9 EDM - 100%
9 LAK - 100%
9 MTL - 100%
9 NYR - 100%
9 SJS - 100%
9 WPG - 100%
17 BUF - 99.9%
18 MIN - 98.4%
19 STL - 98.2%
20 NSH - 97.5%
21 TBL - 96.2%

From there, it drops to 5 "bubble" teams in the 86-87% range - these teams are OK, but not great - I could see one of these teams not making it (with NYI possibly improving with the move to Brooklyn).

22 NJD - 87.4%, 15.4k/game avg (#1 media market - New York)
23 FLA - 86.6%, 16.6k (#16 media market - Miami)
24 ANA - 86.4%, 14.8k (#2 media market - Los Angeles)
25 COL - 86.1%, 15.5k (#17 media market - Denver)
26 CAR - 85.9%, 16.0k (#24 media market - Raleigh)

From there, it drops to 4 weak teams in the 72-81% range - all of which avg'd < 15k/game. These teams look like candidates for contraction or relocation (again NYI might move up and one of the above 5 could move down into this group):
27 NYI - 81.3%, 13.2k/game avg
28 CBJ - 80.8% , 14.7k
29 DAL - 76.8%, 14.2k
30 PHX - 72.5%, 12.4k

Additionally, Quebec and a second team in Toronto are likely do-able.

So 21 solid + 5 bubble + 2 relocation = 28 teams.
Sell out are better than not selling out but butts in the seats jobs to gate revenie. with no cap and no rs the teams at the bottom would be financially worse off then they are now, the have teams with big arenas will still charge premiums for tickets that would simply not fly in non traditional markets.


With no cap and no rs, I'm not sure Montreal could keep up with the leafs. You could possibly start with 28 markets, but the lack parity would mean a lot of these teams would be treading water ahead of their eventual demise.

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