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article imageForbes: Toronto Maple Leafs tops in NHL value, teams' value rises

By Marcus Hondro     Nov 25, 2014 in Sports
Blame it on the deal with Rogers Communications, if you want to find a reason for the average worth of NHL franchises vaulting all the way up to $490 million. That and the value of the Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Rangers and Montreal Canadiens.
The lucrative deal the league signed with Rogers and the exposure it's provided is a big reason for the average franchise value to move upwards. And numbers show a new CBA, which lowered the salary cap of NHL teams from 57 percent to 50 percent, is having a positive effect on team profits.
And as Forbes points out, the NHL now has its first teams worth in the 10-digit range, three of them. The value of the Toronto Maple Leafs leads the way at $1.3 billion, the New York Rangers are valued at $1.1 billion and the Montreal Canadians are at $1 billion.
It is, by the way, the ninth straight year that the Maple Leafs have been estimated to be the most valuable team in the league by Forbes.
In total, 29 of 30 teams rose in value since this time last year, with the Florida Panthers being the only team that did not. However, Forbes writer Mike Ozanian attributes the Panthers' numbers to a lower sale price than had been reported last year. Had the actual sale price been taken into account in last year's numbers, the Panthers also would show growth in value this year.
Rounding out the top ten: 4) Chicago Blackhawks ($825 million); 5) Vancouver Canucks ($800 million); 6) Boston Bruins ($750 million); 7) Philadelphia Flyers ($625 million); 8) L.A. Kings ($580 million); 9) Detroit Red Wings ($570 million) and 10) Pittsburgh Penguins ($565 million).
The bottom two clubs in value are the Columbus Blue Jackets at $200 million and the Panthers at $190 million.
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