Wednesday, August 8, 2007

More Evidence NHL Salaries are Just Fine

Despite the fact that NHL salaries seem to be out of control, franchises are worth more now than ever before. The NHL's salary cap has risen to $50.3-million a team, an increase of $11-million in just two years. This is bad for the owners, right? Wrong.

In a previous post, Allan Muir argued that NHL salaries are fine, and teams are now paying for how players will perform during their contract years, and not for how they performed in the past. Allan Make of The Globe and Mail now provides further evidence that Gary Bettman knows what he is doing.

It seems the only thing that is skyrocketing faster than NHL salaries, is NHL franchise values.

If you scribbled "The end is near" on a placard and paraded it outside the National Hockey League's head office in New York, some hockey people would understand why.

They've watched teams being sold in furious fashion these days. They know that Craig Leipold couldn't wait to unshackle himself from the Nashville Predators after losing $70-million (all currency U.S.) in nine years. They know that Bill Davidson has lost more than $70-million since buying the Tampa Bay Lightning in 1999.

They may even know that Alan Cohen and his partners have lost $90-million in their six-year association with the Florida Panthers, and that the Atlanta Thrashers are
looking for fresh cash. The Phoenix Coyotes, too.