Forbes: Maple Leafs only NHL team on richest 50

NHL analyst Elliotte Friedman says next season’s version of the Maple Leafs will be very intriguing, because the roster will be full of players that have to prove themselves for their next contract.

They’ve only qualified for the playoffs once in their last 10 attempts, but the Toronto Maple Leafs are the only hockey team and the only Canadian sports franchise to crack Forbes’ 2015 list of the world’s 50 most valuable sports teams.

The world’s richest hockey team is worth $1.3 billion, according to Forbes, placing the Leafs 37th in global franchise worth — a spot they share with the Miami Dolphins.

To show how wealthy major franchises have become, a $1.3 billion value would have ranked Toronto fifth overall in 2010.

The Leafs declined ranking-wise from Forbes’ 2014 estimate, which placed the club 26th overall at $1.15 billion.

Real Madrid ($3.36 billion) retains its position atop the rich list for the third straight year. They raked in $277 million in broadcast revenue alone. The New York Yankees and Dallas Cowboys–tied for second at $3.2 billion–both upped their position from last June.

Their rise is indicative of the wealth being accumulated by the NFL and MLB. Last year’s top 50 featured 10 baseball and football franchises; 2015’s list features 22.

On average, Earth’s 50 wealthiest sports clubs are worth $1.15 billion, a 31 per cent increase from 2014.

Here is the top 10. For a slideshow of the full 50, head over to Forbes.

1. Real Madrid $3.26 billion
2. Dallas Cowboys $3.2 billion
2. New York Yankees $3.2 billion
4. Barcelona $3.16 billion
5. Manchester United $3.1 billion
6. Los Angeles Lakers $2.6 billion
6. New England Patriots $2.6 billion
8. New York Knicks $2.5 billion
9. Los Angeles Dodgers $2.4 billion
9. Washington Redskins $2.4 billion

When submitting content, please abide by our submission guidelines, and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account. Sportsnet reserves the right to close a story’s comment section at any time.