Efficiency of NHL Teams

I'm a macro-economics kind of guy, so I like to see how an NHL team spends its money. I've crunched a few numbers to find the efficiency of each NHL team, and then compared the teams with this super-slick looking but slightly busy bar graph, which I made using my nunchuck-like skills on MS Paint.

Here's what I came up with:


Here's some info on the data. Unless you have a severe obsession with transparency of information and accuracy of numbers, you can skip past the jump.

I found each NHL team's salary at I simply divided the total salary by the number of points earned, which gave me the cost of each point. For example, Colorado had a salary of 49.619 million. They produced 88 points, so they paid $563,852 per point. A couple notes of caution: the salary included some injury pay, so several teams had reduced efficiency simply due to many injuries. Philadelphia and Washington provide examples of such a scenario.

In Praise of Our Dear Leader

As you can see, in 2011-2012 our Beloved Burgundy Brigade narrowly escaped Phoenix to become the 5th most efficient team in the NHL, as they forked over $563,852 per point earned. Only Nashville, St. Louis, Dallas, and Ottawa had more efficient salaries. Now, the job of an NHL coach is essentially to produce the best results with the options given. It's pretty evident in the current Jack Adams' candidates that efficiency with the provided players is a pretty big deal. St. Louis' Ken Hitchhock (2nd most efficient team) will undoubtedly win, but other candidate include Dave Tippett (6th), Kevin Dineen (9th), Paul MacLean (4th), and of course perennial dark horse candidate Barry Trotz (1st). All that said, I think Joe Sacco has given management no choice but to rehire him (which they did). That he can take the youngest and cheapest team in the league, with no clear leadership roles or captain material coming into the season, and produce a near-playoff team with impressive efficiency gives a strong statement about his ability. Greg Sherman can also be applauded also for making the right moves by bringing in the cheap, effective players that Sacco was able to utilize. Imagine what these inept bumbling fools could do with looser purse strings.

Some Vague and Trivial Speculations

I color-coordinated the graph by efficiency. The closer to infrared - the more efficient the team. I realize why Toronto had to send out an apology to the fans for their catastrophic season. I also don't understand how Edmonton can draft the top pick two years in a row and yet remain so inferior. Columbus did not have a very good season.

An Invitation for Your Opinion (These don't come often; take it while you can get it.)

Do numbers not matter? Will Joe Sacco always be a worthless SOB? Are there any other assumptions that can be opined by this graph? is a fan community, allowing members to post their own thoughts and opinions on the Colorado Avalanche and hockey in general. These views and thoughts may not be shared by the editors of

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Mile High Hockey

You must be a member of Mile High Hockey to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Mile High Hockey. You should read them.

Join Mile High Hockey

You must be a member of Mile High Hockey to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Mile High Hockey. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.