The Pandemic has hit all of the big four sports leagues hard this year, but it seems that the NHL took the hardest hit and the New York Islanders weren’t spared from the pain.
Forbes released its valuations for all 31 NHL teams on Wednesday and it was far from what the NHL or its member teams wanted to see. The pandemic took a massive toll on the league with average NHL team values down 2%, league revenue was 14% less than what it was the year prior and operating income dropped 68%.
The New York Islanders also took a big hit, according to Forbes, posting a $39 million operating loss, making them one of nine teams to post double-digit operating losses. Forbes did keep their valuation the same as the previous year’s $520 million, which ranked them 16th among the 31 NHL teams.
The Islanders also generated the second-lowest revenue in the NHL at $93 million after revenue sharing.
The figures should not come as that much of a surprise to those who follow the sport. COVID-19 forced the NHL to stop the season before it was complete and with the playoffs taking place in bubble cities with no fans, the league lost out on a lot of revenue at the gate.
In terms of the New York Islanders that was especially true. They had all but one of their home games slated to take place at Nassau Coliseum and despite their deep playoff run, they lost out on all that potential revenue because games were not on Long Island.
Forbes did note — rightfully so — that there was a light at the end of the tunnel for the Islanders. UBS Arena is expected to open next fall and tickets have been selling strongly for the team’s new home. And one would have to imagine that the United States and the rest of the world would be out of the COVID-19 pandemic by that point.