SBD/October 22, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Richard Peddie's "Dream Job" Discusses NHL's Lack Of Financial Transparency

Peddie said his whole career was
based on marketing
Former MLSE President & CEO Richard Peddie's book "Dream Job" was released today, and Peddie offered an excerpt of the book in a special to the GLOBE & MAIL. He writes, "I really like [NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman]. He was always good to me. He was always approachable, always returned my calls and was always willing to hear my ideas and give me advice." But Peddie adds he and Bettman "did not always see eye to eye." Peddie: "I was always pushing for more financial transparency. What gives Gary some of his power is the lack of transparency. I was a pit bull on numbers. My whole career was based on marketing, but I got good on finances. I’d ask deputy commissioner Bill Daly, 'What are we making as a league?' I never got an answer to that question. I would say at meetings, 'I, as CEO of the Leafs, must provide full financial disclosure to our shareholders. Why doesn't the league do the same?'" Peddie writes the NBA "offers a useful lesson in the value of transparency." When NBA Commissioner David Stern "came out and told the owners, fans, media" and the NBPA that the league was losing almost $300M a year, it "quantified the financial challenge facing the negotiating parties and helped get a deal that will make the NBA's financial future more secure." The NHL is "a healthy league on the ice," and the "revenue picture is solid." But "any talk of more revenue sharing makes sense only if the league collectively makes money." Peddie writes he and Bettman also "disagreed about was the size of the league." Peddie: "A lot of good people are trying to make the Southern U.S. clubs succeed, but I simply don't think that some of them will ever make it" (GLOBE & MAIL, 10/19).
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