from Alex Silverman of Sports Business Journal,
As the new season begins, Bettman sat down with Sports Business Journal to discuss what’s next. (Lightly edited for brevity and clarity.)
How does the NHL plan to grow revenue after a record season in 2021-22?
Bettman: We keep it going by continuing to evolve to take advantage of technology. You’ll see digitally enhanced dasherboards this coming season and advertising on jerseys. We keep it going by doing more connectivity using technology with our fans on social media and digital platforms, by using the presence that ESPN and all their platforms and TNT and all their platforms give us and continue to look for new ways to connect our people and our fans to our game.
On the local front, there’s been a lot of change in the RSN landscape. How concerned are you about those deals as a long-term revenue stream for clubs?
Bettman: There will always be a demand for the games, especially locally, in addition to nationally and internationally. We’re monitoring it closely, but over time everybody’s going to have to adjust to the marketplace. Sinclair’s looking at direct to consumer. That’s something that we’re looking at, as well. But we’re trying to be good cooperative partners, to make sure that the regional sports business can be as strong as it can under the circumstances.
We understand that some teams may on their own at some point in time want to go direct to consumers as well. So, we’re making sure we understand all the implications of that so we can help our clubs make those decisions as their agreements expire.