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NHL commissioner Gary Bettman moves prepares to shake hands with Rogers CEO Nadir Mohamed at an event to announce the rights deal.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman moves prepares to shake hands with Rogers CEO Nadir Mohamed at an event to announce the rights deal.
(Chris Young/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

NHL emerges as biggest winner in blockbuster rights deal

Most of the media coverage surrounding Rogers Communications Inc.’s $5.2-billion, 12-year deal for the National Hockey League’s broadcasting rights has focused on what a huge win this is for Rogers. But the communications giant may not be the big winner it appears.

Yes, the company secured a highly valued Canadian media property for the next 12 years, all but shutting out its competitors. It has its hands on a product that people will pay for: A live event that can’t realistically be stored and consumed at a more convenient time by its audience, but still has all kinds of possibilities for improving the convenience of delivery. Different devices, packages, fee structures – they’re all options for Rogers to exploit.