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DETROIT (WWJ) - The Detroit Red Wings are the fourth most-valuable NHL franchise, according to Forbes Magazine. And, it should be no surprise that the Original Six teams occupy the top six spots in the rankings.
The Toronto Maple Leafs topped the list with a worth of $521 million, followed by the New York Rangers at $507 million and the Montreal Canadiens at $445 million.
The Wings hold the fourth spot — valued at $336 million.
Rounding out the list are the Boston Bruins at $325 million, the Chicago Blackhawks at $306 million, Vancouver Canucks at $300 million, Philadelphia Flyers at $209 million, Pittsburgh Penguins at $264 million and Los Angeles Kings at $232 million.
While Detroit had an operating income of $16 million, Forbes says 18 of the league’s 30 teams are losing money due to a high salary cap that makes it hard to pay top players and turn a profit.
Forbes also says the average hockey team is now worth $240 million, five percent more than last year due to a five percent increase in revenue during the 2010-11 season, to an average of $103 million per team.