NHL Moneyball: Here Are The Most -- And Least -- Productive Hockey Teams

The Huffington Post Canada  |  By Posted: 04/10/2012 2:39 pm Updated: 04/10/2012 3:03 pm

Disappointed Torontonians and Montrealers can be excused for thinking they’re not getting their money’s worth from their hockey teams, but a new study on the productivity of NHL franchises suggests some other fans have it even worse.

The survey from BMO Capital Markets finds many of Canada’s most popular hockey teams are near the bottom in terms of how many points they scored versus how much they spent.

The Edmonton Oilers are the least productive Canadian NHL team, the survey found, scoring 1.22 points in the regular 2011-2012 season for every $1 million the team spent.

Only the Columbus Blue Jackets, at 1.06 goals per million dollars spent, were less productive.

The Leafs and the Montreal Canadiens did little better, though, scoring 1.26 and 1.25 points, respectively, for every $1 million they spent.

“Part of the Oilers’ problem (and, to some extent, the Habs) is the hangover from earlier contracts and/or injuries, and the team is stocked with plenty of young talent,” the BMO survey states. “We have no explanation for the Leafs.”

The most productive teams were the Nashville Predators, at 2.02 points per million spent, and the St. Louis Blues, at 1.99 points.

But plenty of teams that didn’t make the playoffs actually scored very well on the productivity rankings, with the Colorado Avalanche and Dallas Stars scoring near 1.8 points per million spent, or nearly 50 per cent more than the Leafs and Habs.

The Calgary Flames and Vancouver Canucks earned only 1.4 points and 1.7 points, respectively.

And the most productive Canadian team? The Ottawa Senators, with 1.78 points per million dollars spent, placing them in a fourth-place tie with Colorado.

See which teams are the most productive, and least productive in the league:

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  • Top 5: #1 Nashville Predators

    <BR>Points: 104 (4th in the Western Conference) <BR>Cap spending: $51.59-million <BR>Points/Million: 2.02 One of the best defensive systems and an over-performing offence makes Nashville one of the most successful and cash-efficient teams in the NHL. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

  • Top 5: #2 St. Louis Blues

    <BR>Points: 109 (2nd in the West) <BR>Cap Spending: $54.87-million <BR>Points/Million: 1.99 A textbook example of what happens when a rebuild works, the St. Louis Blues weathered a so-so early season and turned into a powerhouse. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

  • Top 5: #3 Ottawa Senators

    <BR>Points: 92 (8th in the East) <BR>Cap Spending: $51.65-million <BR>Points/Million: 1.78 Few expected much from an Ottawa squad in the middle of a rebuild but breakout performances from a few rookies nudged the Senators into the playoffs. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

  • Top 5: #4 Phoenix Coyotes

    <BR>Points: 97 (3rd in the West) <BR>Cap Spending: 55.06 <BR>Points/Million: 1.76 The financial troubles of the Coyotes have been well publicized. Funny thing is they managed to put together a decent hockey team this season, too. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

  • Top 5: #5 New York Rangers

    <BR>Points: 109 (1st in the East) <BR>Cap Spending: $61.96-million <BR>Points/Million: 1.76 One of the league's best goalies? Check. Smart second and third-line talent? Check. One of the best Rangers teams since the 1994 Cup winner? Check. (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)

  • Bottom 5: #30 Columbus Blue Jackets

    <BR>Points: 65 (15th in the West) <BR>Cap Spending: 61.34 <BR>Points/Million: 1.06 Lets just chalk up Columbus' dismal performance to the fact they're in the Central divison, arguably the most competitive in hockey this year. Four out of five teams in that division made the playoffs this year. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

  • Bottom 5: #29 Edmonton Oilers

    <BR>Points: 74 (14th in the West) <BR>Cap Spending: $60.49-million <BR>Points/Millions: 1.22 The Oilers have some of the hottest young talent in the NHL but didn't translate into success on the ice. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

  • Bottom 5: #28 Montreal Canadiens

    <BR>Points: 78 (15th in the East) <BR>Cap Spending: $62.20-million <BR>Points/Millions: 1.25 Injuries scuttled the chances of Habs success this season. Goalie Carey Price's performance is one bright light. (Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)

  • Bottom 5: #27 Toronto Maple Leafs

    <BR>Points: 80 (13th in the East) <BR>Cap Spending: $63.46-million <BR>Points/Millions: 1.26 Goaltending problems, an underperforming blue line, a lack of a game-dominating centre. The Leafs need more than a few pieces before they can field a contender. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

  • Bottom 5: #26 Anaheim Ducks

    <BR>Points: 78 (13th in the West) <BR>Cap Spending: $59.57-million <BR>Points/Millions: 1.34 An ageing offence, holes on defence. Is it any wonder that the Ducks underperformed this year? (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Editor's note: An earlier version of this article incorrectly asserted that the Calgary Flames made the playoffs. They didn't. The article has been edited to reflect this.