A story in today’s Washington Post talks about how the NHL has struggled to find a television audience, despite the fact that most of the league’s teams are making money and selling tickets.
The story takes a look at the different television contracts that the professional sports leagues enjoy. Long story short: Major League Baseball has a decent television contract. Much better than hockey. About the same as the NBA. And not nearly as sweet as the NFL’s contract.
Major League Baseball and the NBA, the story says, earn more than $700 million a year from national television rights, of which teams receive more than $20 million apiece. The NBA’s and MLB’s share of national television revenue is well into the double digits.
The NFL earns nearly $4 billion each year in national television rights fees, which earns each team well in excess of $100 million a year. The NFL’s television revenue is about 66 percent of the total league-wide earnings.
The NHL national rights fee contract with OLN amounts to about $2 million per team. The NHL will earn about 3 percent of its revenue from national television this year.