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Industry Factors and the Changing Dynamics of the Player-Agent Relationship in Professional Ice Hockey


  • Mason, Daniel S.
  • Slack, Trevor


Player agents are now long-established and influential stakeholders in the business of professional ice hockey in North America. With the help of agents, average National Hockey League (NHL) player salaries have grown from US$24,000 in 1972 to an average of US$1.49 million annually in the 2000/2001 season. Since the arrival of agents in the mid-1960s, the professional hockey industry has experienced significant and turbulent growth. This paper identifies and reviews the industry changes that have taken place in hockey in recent decades and the manner in which these factors have affected the relationship between player and agent. Principal-agent theory is used to facilitate an analysis of the contracts and relationships between professional hockey players and sports agents and to understand the effects of changing environmental pressures upon these relationships.

Suggested Citation

  • Mason, Daniel S. & Slack, Trevor, 2001. "Industry Factors and the Changing Dynamics of the Player-Agent Relationship in Professional Ice Hockey," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 165-191, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:spomar:v:4:y:2001:i:2:p:165-191

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Glenn M. MacDonald, 1984. "New Directions in the Economic Theory of Agency," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 17(3), pages 415-440, August.
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    5. Jensen, Michael C. & Meckling, William H., 1976. "Theory of the firm: Managerial behavior, agency costs and ownership structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 305-360, October.
    6. Lewis Tracy R. & Sappington David E. M., 1993. "Ignorance in Agency Problems," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 169-183, October.
    7. Demsetz, Harold, 1983. "The Structure of Ownership and the Theory of the Firm," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(2), pages 375-390, June.
    8. Fama, Eugene F, 1980. "Agency Problems and the Theory of the Firm," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(2), pages 288-307, April.
    9. Baker, George P, 1992. "Incentive Contracts and Performance Measurement," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(3), pages 598-614, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Herm, Steffen & Callsen-Bracker, Hans-Markus & Kreis, Henning, 2014. "When the crowd evaluates soccer players’ market values: Accuracy and evaluation attributes of an online community," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 484-492.

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