Will the Rogers deal apply greater pressure for the NHL to add another Canadian team?

Will Rogers be seeking more Canadian NHL content in the form of an eighth franchise?
Author:
Publish date:
The Hockey News

The Hockey News

As the monumental NHL-Rogers broadcast deal rips through the landscape like a seismic shift, there are myriad scenarios to be played out and questions to be answered.

For starters, does this signal the beginning of the end for BCE as stakeholders in MLSE? You’d have to think they’d want to divest themselves of properties they share with Rogers.

The really big aftershock, however, would be if the deal applies greater pressure for the NHL to place another team in Canada.

Presumably, Rogers will be jonesing to get its hands on all the Canadian content it can. Another club north of the border, in Quebec City or Markham, would provide a slew of additional inventory for the broadcast behemoth to sell to its sponsors and package to its audiences. There’d be 82 more games for one Canadian market and a host of new Canadian-vs.-Canadian telecasts to put on the airwaves, online and on mobile devices.

From an NHL perspective, it has been widely speculated that if the number of franchises in Canada grows, so too would the Canadian rights deal. That’d be more cash lining pockets of the league and its teams.

If the league indeed decides to add another team in Canada, Quebec City has a head-start. Arena construction, which began in 2012, is reported to be about 30 per cent complete and on schedule to be finished in the summer of 2015.

Markham city council, meantime, has a final vote scheduled for Dec. 2 or 3 to accept or reject the proposed GTA Centre. If approved, shovels could go in the ground, reportedly, as early as March, 2014.

The NHL has steered clear of officially endorsing additional teams in any markets, either by expansion or relocation; the party line is it listens to all offers.

The next NHL Board of Governors meeting is set for Dec. 9-10 in Pebble Beach, Calif.

TOP HEADLINES

USATSI_15665630_168394049_lowres
Play

Leafs' Response on Defense More Important Than Shutout of Series

A three-game shutout sweep from three different goaltenders in three consecutive games would have been historic, but the Maple Leafs accomplished more with how they played after the goal against.

JacobPerreault
Play

The AHL is Wild Fun Right Now

An influx of high-end teens waiting for their major junior seasons to start has led to some stacked farm teams.

P1000482

Leafs Matthews, Andersen, return against Oilers. Campbell May Also Dress

The Toronto Maple Leafs get the league's top scorer and their starting netminder back when they take on the Edmonton Oilers in the finale of a three-game set at Rogers Place.