Kukla's Korner Hockey

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Too Much Money Spent

07/30/2021 at 8:54pm EDT

from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,

It was another week for the economics of the NHL to defy the laws of, well, economics.

This is a league, let’s not forget, that has lost hundreds of millions of dollars in the past 18 months because of COVID-19. Maybe a billion. Maybe more.

To deal with these losses, the NHL has added about 25 NHL jobs through expansion. This has happened at a time when all 31 teams were limited to just 28 home games in the 2020-21 season. For those games, the seven Canadian teams were able to entertain no fans in their buildings, and the rest had partial crowds.

Have we illustrated accurately the nature of the NHL’s misery during the pandemic? The only uptick has been selling decals on helmets and cutting a new TV deal south of the border, for the tiny percentage of Americans who actually watch.

Despite the depths of this financial despair, teams went out and spent wildly this week on free agents. Not just any free agents. Players who, for the most part, aren’t stars. Players who generally don’t drive attendance or play at such a level that they can really be described as difference-makers.

On Wednesday, the first day of free agency, NHL clubs signed 163 players to contracts worth $785 million (U.S.), according to Capfriendly.com. On the second day, they spent another $133 million.


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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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