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Leafs Stand to Lose ~$7 MILLION DOLLARS Per Game this Playoffs if Building Has No Fans


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Last time people were happy just to have hockey back. We went into a strange fan-less hockey playoff (which the Leafs were erased from early), and I tuned out quickly thereafter.

 

This time we're guaranteed to have four Canadian teams in the playoffs, and one of them WILL be in the conference final (a rare achievement in itself). But with covid now having a greater impact north of the border (with a THIRD wave resulting in a month-long lockdown for April) the question is...... will ALL of the Canadian teams be playing in front of EMPTY arenas while their American counterparts have fans?  If so, how would that work?  Would there be some form of revenue sharing going on? Would there be some sort of additional "home ice advantage" granted to the team that hosts games in an empty building? Will teams be allowed to play at a neutral location where they can have fans? Ex: Could the Leafs play their playoff games in a lax covid environment like Tampa (to have fans) instead of play in Toronto where the government will surely prohibit it?

 

The Leafs stand to lose about $7 million dollars PER GAME (at the gate) for every playoff game that they play in front of an empty building.  If the Leafs are bringing in $0 per game at the gate while a team like the Capitals, Lightning, or whoever has 20,000 fans in the building, and can generate millions in playoff revenue, how is that fair? Will that fly with the Board of Governors? (Picture a blue and white sun about to turn into an angry red giant.)

 

I thought for sure that we had the issue of covid solved by late February. The vaccines were finally rolling out, and it appeared that life was going back to normal. However, the month of March marked the beginning of another exponential rise in cases. A third wave of the virus. New cases are back up over 5,000/day in Canada with the new covid variants hospitalizing YOUNG people now, not just seniors. The new strains of covid are proving to be far easier to transmit, and the data now shows they are far more lethal than the original covid virus. Ontario enters lockdown tomorrow for the rest of April. The US doesn't seem to be experiencing this third wave.

 

It appears as though come May, all of the US teams will be playing in front of fans at full capacity like usual, and the Canadian teams won't be allowed fans. 

 

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Ya...not sure you're going to get any sympathy for poor starving Maple Leaf corporation that are worth a bazillion dollars. What's next....Go Fund Me for the Yankees?

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, flyercanuck said:

Ya...not sure you're going to get any sympathy for poor starving Maple Leaf corporation that are worth a bazillion dollars. What's next....Go Fund Me for the Yankees?

 

I guess my point (which kind of got buried within my post) is:

 

  • Do teams share playoff revenue with teams that aren't allowed fans in their building?
  • Could a team like the Leafs play in a neutral city somewhere? (Somewhere they're allowed to have fans?)

 

Could you imagine a baseball postseason where the Yankees aren't allowed to have fans in their stadium due to covid but the Red Sox and Dodgers are?  That's basically what we're talking about here.  Could that even happen in MLB?  The Yankees would probably boycott the postseason and shut down all of MLB with their clout. 

 

Last year this wasn't an issue because the entire NHL playoffs were played in two BUBBLE CITIES: Toronto and Edmonton, with NO fans. This time it's different. Everyone is in their own city playing by their own rules.  How can you allow one team to play in front of fans and not allow their opponent to do the same? Given that Ontario just entered a third lockdown today, it seems highly unlikely that the Leafs will be allowed to have fans in their building in May. 

 

How (from a business perspective) would the Leafs even agree to participate in these playoffs unless they have the same opportunity to generate revenue from ticket sales as their American counterparts? If I were running MLSE I'd say "No fans = No Leafs. ie: The Leafs will sit out the playoffs and boycott unless we're allowed to have fans and/or unless the playoff revenue goes into a pool and gets split among the teams."

 

:IDunnoSmiley:

Edited by WordsOfWisdom
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14 hours ago, WordsOfWisdom said:

The US doesn't seem to be experiencing this third wave.

 

They already had a third wave, and are hoping to avoid a fourth.

 

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On 4/3/2021 at 10:28 AM, flyercanuck said:

Ya...not sure you're going to get any sympathy for poor starving Maple Leaf corporation that are worth a bazillion dollars. What's next....Go Fund Me for the Yankees?

How do you lose 7 million dollars a game with no fans?

 

I work in an arena and know how much It costs per game even letting 1000 fans in the building. Most of the costs are staff, ushers, concourse food court.

 

With no fans, it was literally camera crew, ice techs and event techs and one security at the door on Carmichael Street. It costs between $10000 and $20000 a day to keep the chillers and brine system on and ice techs maintaining the ice

 

 

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On 4/3/2021 at 10:36 AM, WordsOfWisdom said:

 

I guess my point (which kind of got buried within my post) is:

 

  • Do teams share playoff revenue with teams that aren't allowed fans in their building?
  • Could a team like the Leafs play in a neutral city somewhere? (Somewhere they're allowed to have fans?)

 

Could you imagine a baseball postseason where the Yankees aren't allowed to have fans in their stadium due to covid but the Red Sox and Dodgers are?  That's basically what we're talking about here.  Could that even happen in MLB?  The Yankees would probably boycott the postseason and shut down all of MLB with their clout. 

 

Last year this wasn't an issue because the entire NHL playoffs were played in two BUBBLE CITIES: Toronto and Edmonton, with NO fans. This time it's different. Everyone is in their own city playing by their own rules.  How can you allow one team to play in front of fans and not allow their opponent to do the same? Given that Ontario just entered a third lockdown today, it seems highly unlikely that the Leafs will be allowed to have fans in their building in May. 

 

How (from a business perspective) would the Leafs even agree to participate in these playoffs unless they have the same opportunity to generate revenue from ticket sales as their American counterparts? If I were running MLSE I'd say "No fans = No Leafs. ie: The Leafs will sit out the playoffs and boycott unless we're allowed to have fans and/or unless the playoff revenue goes into a pool and gets split among the teams."

 

:IDunnoSmiley:

Not quite. NHL revenue leans heavily on gate receipts. Baseball is all about revenue from the local television markets. And the Yankees on TV (hello YES Network) make a heckuva lot more money than the Yankees in Yankee Stadium. The Yankees financial dominance has nothing to do with gate receipts and everything to do with being the most popular sports team in the largest market in the U.S. and owning a quarter of the network that airs their games. That’s a license to print money.

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16 hours ago, J0e Th0rnton said:

How do you lose 7 million dollars a game with no fans?

 

I mean the revenue lost, not the operating cost. 

 

16 hours ago, J0e Th0rnton said:

With no fans, it was literally camera crew, ice techs and event techs and one security at the door on Carmichael Street. It costs between $10000 and $20000 a day to keep the chillers and brine system on and ice techs maintaining the ice

 

You're looking at operating costs.  I'm looking at opportunity costs.  :) 

 

 

 

 

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14 hours ago, B21 said:

Not quite. NHL revenue leans heavily on gate receipts.

 

Correct. That means a team like Toronto is hurt badly by not being able to collect that ticket revenue. These aren't $20 tickets or buy 1 get 1 free. They're the most expensive tickets in the NHL. 

 

14 hours ago, B21 said:

The Yankees financial dominance has nothing to do with gate receipts and everything to do with being the most popular sports team in the largest market in the U.S. and owning a quarter of the network that airs their games. That’s a license to print money.

 

I agree, but it's not like that in hockey. In the NHL, the TV revenue is nice, but the bulk of the money comes from the arena in ticket sales. 

 

So my question is, will the Leafs be playing their playoff games in the US somewhere so that they can have fans in the building? I'd rather watch the team play its playoff games in a city where they can have fans than watch them play in an empty building in Toronto. Plus, if this is known in advance, maybe the border will be open and fans can travel there once this happens. 

 

:) 

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On 4/3/2021 at 10:36 AM, WordsOfWisdom said:

Could you imagine a baseball postseason where the Yankees aren't allowed to have fans in their stadium due to covid but the Red Sox and Dodgers are?  That's basically what we're talking about here.  Could that even happen in MLB?  The Yankees would probably boycott the postseason and shut down all of MLB with their clout. 

 

Most of MLB opened their seasons with partial stadiums filled.

 

Texas Rangers are scheduled to open the season today with a full house (assuming, of course, that anyone wants to see the Texas Rangers play the... *checks notes*... Tronno Blue Jays???)

 

How are the Blue Jays even in the country? Ah, I see, they're playing in Florida. Let's see how that works out for them...

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On 4/5/2021 at 9:20 AM, radoran said:

How are the Blue Jays even in the country? Ah, I see, they're playing in Florida. Let's see how that works out for them...

 

If they were in Toronto they wouldn't be allowed to have any fans in the building. That's my point. We can't have different rules for different cities. It's not fair to the teams that can't host fans in their building. Don't be surprised when the Leafs are playing their playoff games in New York or Tampa or wherever. I highly doubt they'll be playing them in Toronto in front of an empty arena under covid restrictions. 

 

Texas Rangers vs Toronto Blue Jays was turning into a nice rivalry.... at least until Toronto management blew up the roster and did a rebuild. Now nobody cares.

 

Edited by WordsOfWisdom
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On 4/5/2021 at 10:04 AM, WordsOfWisdom said:

 

Correct. That means a team like Toronto is hurt badly by not being able to collect that ticket revenue. These aren't $20 tickets or buy 1 get 1 free. They're the most expensive tickets in the NHL. 

 

 

I agree, but it's not like that in hockey. In the NHL, the TV revenue is nice, but the bulk of the money comes from the arena in ticket sales. 

 

So my question is, will the Leafs be playing their playoff games in the US somewhere so that they can have fans in the building? I'd rather watch the team play its playoff games in a city where they can have fans than watch them play in an empty building in Toronto. Plus, if this is known in advance, maybe the border will be open and fans can travel there once this happens. 

 

:) 

Incorrect. TV advertising revenue is the lifeblood of every major league sport. Gate sales are a lot, but only a quarter of their revenue compared to TV revenue.

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Posted (edited)
18 minutes ago, J0e Th0rnton said:

Incorrect. TV advertising revenue is the lifeblood of every major league sport. Gate sales are a lot, but only a quarter of their revenue compared to TV revenue.

 

This was all I could find quickly, so I will extrapolate and carry forward assuming it's the norm. I'll leave it to others to find more recent stats if they're interested:

 

gate.thumb.png.eac11e99ca6b7e85704f04c3fbb19fd6.png

http://www.threehundredeight.com/2010/06/nhl-gate-revenues.html

 

The NHL signed a TV contract recently with Rogers/Bell for ~$200 million (or whatever it was, Google).  That TV contract was for all NHL games in Canada (split among every team) for the next 10 years or whatever the contract length was. So if you consider: 200 / 10 years / 7 teams < 92.8 million. 

 

In other words, the TV deal is a small portion of the Leafs overall revenues. The Leafs pull in $92.8 mil PER SEASON at the gate... and that's in 2010.  :)

 

Edited by WordsOfWisdom
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4 hours ago, Podein25 said:

 

It's in your nature. 

 

The other cool thing about that graph is that it really shows which teams power the NHL, and which teams are along for the ride.

 

The Flyers are the only US team to crack the top 5. Minnesota comes in #6.  All of the Canadian teams are in the top 10.

 

Not surprisingly, the weakest teams are Phoenix, Tampa, Colorado (which surprised me a bit actually), Carolina (lol no surprise at all), Dallas, NYI, Atlanta (no wonder they moved again), etc...

 

The most accurate representation of where a team is in terms of fan interest is definitely gate revenue.   

 

 

 

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25 minutes ago, WordsOfWisdom said:

The most accurate representation of where a team is in terms of fan interest is definitely gate revenue.

 

Sure, I guess, for most teams.

 

But for the Flyers the best gauge of how the fans are feeling about the team are the numbers of people lining up to jump off the Walt Whitman Bridge.

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16 hours ago, Podein25 said:

 

Sure, I guess, for most teams.

 

But for the Flyers the best gauge of how the fans are feeling about the team are the numbers of people lining up to jump off the Walt Whitman Bridge.

 And the bridge is quite crowded right now!!  I'm about midways between PA and NJ on the free side....

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On 4/3/2021 at 10:36 AM, WordsOfWisdom said:

 

I guess my point (which kind of got buried within my post) is:

 

  • Do teams share playoff revenue with teams that aren't allowed fans in their building?
  • Could a team like the Leafs play in a neutral city somewhere? (Somewhere they're allowed to have fans?)

 

Could you imagine a baseball postseason where the Yankees aren't allowed to have fans in their stadium due to covid but the Red Sox and Dodgers are?  That's basically what we're talking about here.  Could that even happen in MLB?  The Yankees would probably boycott the postseason and shut down all of MLB with their clout. 

 

Last year this wasn't an issue because the entire NHL playoffs were played in two BUBBLE CITIES: Toronto and Edmonton, with NO fans. This time it's different. Everyone is in their own city playing by their own rules.  How can you allow one team to play in front of fans and not allow their opponent to do the same? Given that Ontario just entered a third lockdown today, it seems highly unlikely that the Leafs will be allowed to have fans in their building in May. 

 

How (from a business perspective) would the Leafs even agree to participate in these playoffs unless they have the same opportunity to generate revenue from ticket sales as their American counterparts? If I were running MLSE I'd say "No fans = No Leafs. ie: The Leafs will sit out the playoffs and boycott unless we're allowed to have fans and/or unless the playoff revenue goes into a pool and gets split among the teams."

 

:IDunnoSmiley:

Don't worry about bell and rogers. The greedy cork soakers will just raise cable and cellular fees to make it up. 

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