Looking at the profits from the World Juniors in Edmonton and Calgary, it shows how well Canada supports that tournament. The World Cups and Canada Cups were successful as well, but have fallen by the wayside. The World Championship still falls while pretty much every player with an NHL contract is either in the playoffs or banged up.
Would it be economically feasible to host an annual best versus best tournament through:
1. Moving the World Championships to August/September.
I always kind of wondered why this hasn't happened already. It'd go from being the season ending to season opening tournament, it could be hosted in basically any major nation around the world, wouldn't conflict with league fixtures and would have a higher profile than ever before.
2. The NHL and NHLPA bringing back the World Cup.
Remember how the Canada Cup used to be every for our five years? Can it be put on the calendar as falling two years between the Olympics to keep the profile of hockey up?
3. Hockey Canada and the IIHF somehow working to promote a "Canada Challenge" in August/September, with rotating hosts through Canada (Vancouver/Victoria, Edmonton/Calgary, Saskatoon/Winnipeg, Toronto/Hamilton, Montreal/Quebec City, Atlantic Canada) and the top ten nations playing through. Bell, Rogers and CBC would be tripping over each other to bid on this and Canada being involved would guarantee every game sells out through ticket bundling.
$20,000,000 of profit for the organizers of this years' WJHC with two large arenas shows that there is definitely something to it. The TV viewership in Canada would be high, casual fans in the US seem more interested in best-versus-best international hockey than any other level (it's easy to cheer for the home team), and the TV rights for it could be broken up and sold through Europe.
Too many tournaments are overly taxing for players and water down the overall product. The World Cup is a dead event due to the Olympics. The Canada Cup was great/important because it was the only time we got to see a true best on best event due to the politics at the time. The good thing about the Canada Cup was that there was only 6 teams as well so we did not have to watch the irrelevant countries that are there for filler and cannon fodder these days.
There are too many tournaments involving kids already now as it is. As we see with the WJHC, many of them have turned into strictly for profit events that exploit the participants in order to line the pockets of the organizers. Just like the NCAA now.
I agree with the sentiment too many tournaments is overly taxing, but moving the World Championship to the end of August would not add a new event to the calendar, just improve an existing one. They could possibly do like in the past where in Olympic years, the Olympics and WC were a combined event.
It would also have the benefit of the hockey calendar kicking off with a big event and ending with a big event.