Although Forbes suggested that the NHL's best hope is contraction, the league can fix its current problems and avoid future ones if they were more willing to put teams in markets like Markham, Quebec City and/or Hamilton.
The final say in this process comes down to Gary Bettman.
Although it must have killed Bettman when the Atlanta Thrashers were moved to Winnipeg, it was the right move.
Had Gary Bettman not went head-to-head with Canadian businessman Jim Balsillie, the Phoenix Coyotes would be in Hamilton, and they would likely be doing better economically than in Phoenix.
Now it is understandable that after Balsillie's attempts to move Pittsburgh and Nashville to Hamilton didn't make sense, Phoenix did.
Bettman blocked Balsillie's attempts at buying the Coyotes, and it is a move that didn't pay off.
If Bettman was willing to accept that his expansion moves haven't worked and that relocation was a viable option, there wouldn't be as many teams in the red.