The NHL is an unsustainable business model. Attendance in most places sucks and player salaries are out of control. Owners lose money hand over fist.
The above statement appears to be in conflict with this:
"Following the 2004-05 NHL lockout the fans came back in droves. During the 2005-06 season 25 of the 30 teams had an increase in attendance from the 2003-04 season.
Moreover, the average cost (tickets, concessions, parking, etc.) for a family of four rose from $256 in 2003-04, to $283 at the start of the 2007-08 campaign. The latest figures from Team Marketing Report, for 2011, show the average cost at $329, a 29% increase since the season before the 2004-05 lockout.
Thanks to the fans who continued to pour through the turnstiles, the value of the average NHL team has increased from $159 million in 2003, to $240 million last year,
while the average salary for a hockey player has increased from $1.6 million to $2.4 million." LINK