07/01/2009 7:39 PM - From chicagoblackhawks.com: (link)
Five NHL teams are among the Top 10 professional sports franchises when it comes to paying fans back for their investment of time, money and passion, according to ESPN the Magazine’s Ultimate Standings report. The Carolina Hurricanes are the top ranked NHL franchise and second overall among all professional sports teams, followed by the Detroit Red Wings (#4), Washington Capitals (#6), Pittsburgh Penguins (#8) and St. Louis Blues (#10). This marks the most NHL teams ever represented among the Top 10 in the report’s seven-year history. The full report is available in the current issue of ESPN the Magazine on newsstands Friday.
The report was the result of exclusive and original analysis by ESPN The Magazine and the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center, combined with fan feedback data gathered by the consulting firm Maddock Douglas, ESPN.com and GMI NetReflector. More than 50,000 responses were collected. The analysis is used to determine how franchises establish and maintain the greatest overall reward for their fans.
The 2009 Western Conference champion Detroit Red Wings topped or tied all professional sports franchises in three categories, including fan relations, ownership and title track. The Capitals ranked #1 in responsiveness to fan feedback.
ESPN THE MAGAZINE 2009 ULTIMATE STANDINGS: THE TOP 25