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The Most Profitable NHL Teams | NHL Team Values

Money makes the sports world go round. We often hear about the huge player contracts in leagues like the NFL, NBA, MLB, and NHL. We also hear about the astronomical values that come along with owning one of those major sports franchises.

When it comes to hockey, who are the most profitable NHL teams in the league? Is it the Vancouver Canucks, the Calgary Flames, the Philadelphia Flyers, or another top organization? There are a few answers that won’t surprise you and a few that will. Read on to find out which are the most profitable NHL teams and how they stack up against the competition, including squads with a team value of $1.2 billion and more.

Top 10 Most Profitable NHL Teams

How do we classify the most profitable NHL hockey team? There are two ways to go about it: total value and yearly revenue. For the purposes of determining the most profitable team, we’ll focus on the yearly revenues of each team since a franchise like Seattle hasn’t been around long enough to be a fair judge of total value.

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10. Seattle Kraken – $191 million in Revenue

Seattle Kraken is the newest NHL franchise and one of the most profitable right out of the gate. Hockey officially arrived in the Pacific Northwest for the start of the 2021-22 season, and the results have been a mixed bag on the ice. The team’s record has not been great, but they did make the playoffs this past year, helping their financials and aiding them in these rankings.

The team was terrible in their inaugural season but made the playoffs in Year 2. On top of that, they generated nearly $200 million in total revenue, one of the most popular options in terms of merchandising, as everyone loves buying gear from the new team. The owners must have been very happy to see that.

Hockey has been an early hit in Seattle so far. The success of the 2022-23 season – a playoff appearance and a stunning upset of the defending Stanley Cup Champion Colorado Avalanche – sets hopes high for 2023-24. And with those high hopes should come high revenues as well as big valuations for this sports brand.

9. Washington Capitals – $192 million in Revenue

Just a hair ahead of the Kraken are the Capitals. The D.C.-based franchise brought in $192 million in total revenue over the last year, good for 9th on the list. This is largely due to the fact that the team has been one of the best in the league for more than a decade, consistently competing at the top of the standings.

Though the team is entering something of a transition phase, where aging players are finishing out their careers and young talent is being ushered in, revenues should remain high for one reason: Alex Ovechkin. He continues to close in on Wayne Gretzky’s NHL record for career goals and could catch “The Great One” in the next two years.

Alex Ovechkin does have a ton of fans and followers across social media because of his play style, and that has helped the team position themselves with content. The star brings users to the game where they use services and everything related to the business, sending the revenue up above average in the arena.

For now, “The Great 8” and his chase of immortality will be more than enough to keep interest in the Capitals high. They may not be the Stanley Cup contenders they were even a few years ago, but they will continue to drive revenue like few other franchises.

8. Vegas Golden Knights – $198 million in Revenue

Another relative newcomer to the league, the Knights have had the kind of success that expansion franchises can only dream of. They not only made the playoffs in their inaugural season but took their run all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals.

If that weren’t enough, the team took the step to the biggest level a year ago. They won the Pacific Division and ultimately parlayed that success into the first Stanley Cup championship in the six-year history of the franchise.

Being located in glitzy Las Vegas has helped the Golden Knights charge more for tickets and merchandise, including jerseys, hats, skates, sticks, and other pieces of equipment.

Vegas loves the Knights, and the early success is no doubt a catalyst for that. With more than a handful of stud players in the mix, it is expected that the Knights will remain one of the best and most profitable NHL teams in the land.

7. Boston Bruins – $218 million in Revenue

The Original Six is going to have a major impact on this list. In fact, if we were talking about the values of each franchise, the Original Six would account for the top five spots. But we’re focused on yearly revenue, and the Bruins are still a giant.

The black and gold turned in a historic regular season a year ago, winning the most games and posting the most points ever. Unfortunately, they were ousted in the first round by the Florida Panthers in one of the biggest upsets in NHL history.

The Bruins are also in one of the largest markets, as Boston is a massive sports town and a top-five market. This means that the income from season games for the company can be huge and run into high multiple figures.

For now, the Bruins remain contenders and one of the most profitable NHL teams. Boston is hockey-crazy, and the Bruins are the most successful in a loaded professional sports landscape. And that’s why they remain one of the most valuable NHL teams in the league.

6. Chicago Blackhawks – $222 million in Revenue

Despite being at the bottom of the standings in recent years, the Blackhawks continue to make money hand over fist. Their run during the 2010s – when they won three Stanley Cup championships – fueled a lot of the success.

Even more interestingly, the revenues may only be just starting to climb. The Blackhawks nabbed the impossibly valuable #1 overall pick in the 2023 NHL Draft, grabbing “the Next One” Connor Bedard. His selection has already fueled record season ticket sales. His name and number will definitely be wins for the Blackhawks, who are sure to sell a ton of jerseys with their logo.

If Bedard is as good as people think he is, he could add a ton of value to the team without adding expenses. This could be as much as $110 million or more over time, as reports say that Bedard will draw in a ton of coverage and popularity, helping attendance and ratings on TV.

The Blackhawks, as an Original Six team, remain as valuable as ever. With Bedard now entering the fold, there is no telling just how valuable this franchise will become. Look for the Blackhawks to be much higher on the list this time next year.

NHL Canadian Teams Revenue

5. Edmonton Oilers – $230 million in Revenue

Here is something that won’t come as much of a shock: having the best player in the world helps you become one of the most profitable NHL teams. The Oilers have had a resurgence ever since Connor McDavid came to town, in much the same way Bedard is expected to boost revenues for the Blackhawks.

McDavid has been the most dominant player in the world for nearly a decade, and looks like he could challenge Gretzky in terms of some major career milestones. He’s already won five Art Ross trophies as the league’s leading scorer, tied for second behind Gretzky’s incredible 10 awards.

So long as McDavid is in the fold and continues to dominate, the Oilers will be on the short list of the most profitable NHL teams. If they can manage to capture a Stanley Cup in the near future, there may be no limit on the potential the Oilers have from an investment standpoint.

4. Montreal Canadiens – $239 million in Revenue

It doesn’t even matter if you’re one of the worst teams in the league from a year ago, so long as you have the history, pedigree, and rabid fanbase that the Montreal Canadiens have. Les Habitants were among the worst teams in the league a year ago but are still among the most profitable.

There are bright signs for the future in Montreal, though. Cole Caufield looks like an elite scorer. Top picks David Reinbacher and Juraj Slafkovsky should become franchise anchors for years to come. And another bad season to come will mean even more young talent in the fold.

The Canadiens have won an NHL-record 24 Stanley Cups. With a rabid fanbase behind them, the drive for 25 will keep the Habs at the top of the list of the most profitable NHL teams for a long time to come.

3. Toronto Maple Leafs – $248 million in Revenue

Despite the success of the Canadiens, there are many who feel that Toronto is the mecca of hockey in Canada right now. The Leafs garner more media attention than most American teams, let alone other top hockey Canadian teams. And with that attention comes a boatload of money.

The Leafs are featured in national broadcasts regularly. The Air Canada Center is consistently sold out at record prices. And Maple Leafs gear remains some of the most popular in the entire league. Even facing the Canadian dollar, the Leafs are on the short list of the most profitable teams in the league.

The Leafs have been on the precipice of making a deep run in the playoffs for the first time in decades. If they can get over the hump and make a deep run – or even win the Stanley Cup for the first time since 1967 – the revenues should go through the roof for one of Canada’s most profitable teams.

2. Los Angeles Kings – $249 million in Revenue

It may come as a shock that a non-Original Six team, let alone the Kings, would crack the top five, let alone land at #2. But the Kings managed to generate a ton of revenue in 2022-23, partially because of renewed interest in a young, contending team.

The Kings are also helped by a run similar to that of the Blackhawks. The franchise won a pair of Stanley Cups in the 2010s, competing directly with that dynastic Chicago group. The Kings are one of the better and more interesting teams in the West and should be for years to come.

Being based out of Los Angeles, with inflated prices throughout the state, will certainly help the Kings remain one of the most profitable NHL teams. Whether they can parlay that box office success into another run of Stanley Cups remains to be seen.

1. New York Rangers – $249 million in Revenue

The Original Six reigns supreme, capturing three of the top four spots. The Rangers remain one of the most popular and profitable teams in the NHL, thanks to their home base of New York City. The biggest cities tend to generate quite a bit of revenue, and having the history that few other franchises have doesn’t hurt, either.

The Rangers are also the most valuable franchise in the league at just north of $2.2 billion. Their merchandising is among the best in the league, and the famed Madison Square Garden is consistently sold out to see the Rangers chase their first Stanley Cup since 1994.

The Rangers have a lot of talent on the roster right now, much of it young and still developing. They made a run to the Eastern Conference Finals just two years ago, and there is certainly the possibility that they can end the Cup drought in the near future. All of these things converge to make the Rangers the most profitable team in the NHL.

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NHL Expert's View on The Most Profitable NHL Teams

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Rowan Fisher-Shotton Sports Betting Journalist at GambleOntario

Rowan Fisher-Shotton

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At the end of the day, the NHL has seen exponential growth in its franchises. There was once a time when a franchise could be acquired for less than $100 million, and now there are a few that top the $1 billion mark.

No one comes close to the value that the Original Six teams bring. The Rangers, Maple Leafs, and Canadiens continue to be a cash cow for the league, even if the two latter teams have to deal with the dreaded conversion rate between the Canadian dollar and the American dollar.

FAQs About NHL’s Most Profitable Teams

Depending on how you classify “profitable,” that would be the New York Rangers. They are valued the highest at $2.2 billion, generating more than $150 million in profits every year.

It is estimated that Canadian teams account for as much as one-third of the total revenue taken in by the NHL.

Since they are considered the laughingstock of the NHL, the Arizona Coyotes are the least profitable. They bring in $127 million in total revenue each year, more than $10 million less than the next team (the Florida Panthers).

Even owning a bottom-tier NHL team has proven to be quite profitable. Even if a club isn’t among the most profitable NHL teams, no one brings in less than $125 million in revenue on a yearly basis. Even the Coyotes, considered the least-valuable NHL franchise, are worth nearly $500 million.

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Rowan is a highly accomplished sports betting journalist with a proven track record of over 6 years in the sports media industry. He is widely recognized for his insightful coverage and thought-provoking commentary on major leagues like the NBA, NFL, and NCAA.

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