April 24th, 2024

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman says Winnipeg is a ‘strong NHL market’

By The Canadian Press on February 27, 2024.

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman speaks during a news conference in Toronto on Friday Feb. 2, 2024. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman says Winnipeg is a strong NHL market where "hockey matters," and that he believes the attendance issues affecting the team will be resolved. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

WINNIPEG – NHL commissioner Gary Bettman says Winnipeg is a strong NHL market where “hockey matters,” and that he believes the attendance issues affecting the team will be resolved.

Bettman spoke to reporters Tuesday before the Jets were scheduled to host the St. Louis Blues.

The Jets have averaged the second fewest fans per game in the NHL this season, but Bettman says he doesn’t view the situation as a crisis.

He says, however, there needs to be a collaboration between the team, the community and the fans to find a solution.

Bettman’s comments come days after Jets chairman Mark Chipman said in an interview with The Athletic that current attendance numbers are not sustainable.

The Jets say Winnipeg’s season-ticket base has decreased 27 per cent in three years from approximately 13,000 to just under 9,500.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 27, 2024.

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