Forbes announced its annual NHL franchise values today with the sensationalized tag line: Hockey’s First Decline In Two Decades. The Vegas Golden Knights were ranked 13th overall among the 31 current teams.
While it’s not sunshine and roses financially for every NHL franchise, it’s a bit dramatic. Anyone who reads past the header will discover a major mitigating factor: the COVID-19 pandemic.
The article does explain the effect of no crowds, missing part of your regular season and going into a bubble for the playoffs. Most sports franchises worldwide are going to feel the pandemic pinch at some point.
When it comes to the VGK, the 13th place ranking is according to a franchise value of $570M. That’s down 2% from a year ago which is actually not bad when you consider everything that’s happened. The operating income for the team was listed at $13.9M, a tidy sum. However, it doesn’t approach the top ranked New York Rangers $1.65B valuation and $87M operating income.
Still, the Maloof family and Bill Foley are in good shape. The team also showed $156M in revenue last year.
Each team lost roughly 10 regular season games and all potential playoff income. The Golden Knights’ 2% value decrease matched the average decline of NHL franchise values this year.
You can see the Golden Knights full breakdown here.
Also, if the league does play without fans this year – and it looks like that’s going to happen – expect more financial losses for teams across the board. It’s not the end of times, but it certainly won’t help. Foley previously said he wanted fans in the stands to mitigate losses and reiterated that earlier this week in an interview with the Las Vegas Sun. Current reports point to the season starting as early as January 13th.