The 4 Biggest Threats to IT Procurement Managers in an Uncertain Economy (2024)

David Lehanski

NHL Executive Vice President, Business Development & Innovation

David Lehanski is the Executive Vice President of Business Development & Innovation for the National Hockey League, responsible for leading the League’s technology and innovation initiatives through the establishment of corporate partnerships, state-of-the-art technology solutions and new revenue.

Lehanski joined the NHL in 2005 and has been instrumental in building the most advanced technology solutions in sports. He has been a key driver in establishing the League’s world class technology infrastructure through creating partnerships with tech giants Apple, Amazon Web Services (AWS), SAP, Sportradar, Rogers and Verizon. These partnerships and tremendous advancements in technology and innovation have not only well positioned the NHL to expand and advance both the game and the fan experience, but they have also helped to fuel the League’s remarkable business growth and record revenues.

Lehanski has been at the forefront of the development and implementation of the NHL’s innovative EDGE (Puck and Player Tracking) technology, which received a prestigious Alpha Award for Best Sports Innovation at the 2022 MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference. Under Lehanski’s leadership, the League and NHL EDGE made history alongside ESPN and the Disney Channel with the NHL Big City Greens Classic, the first-ever live, animated NHL game telecast, featuring the Washington Capitals vs. New York Rangers. The hugely popular NHL Big City Greens Classic demonstrated how data from NHL EDGE can create entirely new fan experiences for a younger audience in collaboration with best-in-class partners.

Over the past several seasons, Lehanski has been focused on developing new solutions with industry-leading technology providers including Apple, AWS, SAP, Sportradar, Rogers and Verizon to improve and enhance the game for players, coaches and officials, as well as for fans and for the League’s broadcast and corporate partners. This has included the debut of AWS’s Shot and Save analytics and Face-Off Probability and leveraging Verizon’s cutting-edge 5G technology in-arena.

Lehanski was instrumental in the creation and implementation of the NHL’s groundbreaking in-arena coaching system introduced in 2017 – in collaboration with Apple – delivering real-time video highlights to coaches on the benches of every NHL arena. He also helped to develop the next phase of the NHL’s in-arena coaching system with the launch of the SAP-NHL Coaching Insights App for iPad, providing access to real-time, customized data and player statistics during the game on home and away benches in all 32 arenas.

Inside the NHL, Lehanski leads the NHL’s internal Innovation Team. Made up of internal experts from business development, strategy and information technology, the Innovation Team helps to advance the game of hockey by developing and implementing technology-driven solutions focused on the business and the game. Under Lehanski’s leadership, the Innovation Team has hosted three Technology Showcases – one during CES in Las Vegas in 2019 at T-Mobile Arena showcasing Puck and Player Technology, the second in 2022 at Prudential Center in New Jersey, demonstrating how the League can leverage 5G technology, and the most recent in March 2023 at Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle, exploring new experiences leveraging cloud technology. Each showcase was a pilot of futuristic technology solutions being developed by the NHL in collaboration with several leading technology providers to enhance the in-arena and at-home viewing experience.

Since joining the League in 2005, Lehanski has played an important role in the League’s path to close to $6 billion in annual revenues, establishing landmark partnerships for the NHL with some of the biggest global brands including AWS, Verizon, Apple, SAP, Dunkin, Honda, PepsiCo, Geico, Discover, Enterprise, Cisco, and MillerCoors, among many others. Lehanski was also one of the drivers in the League’s progressive approach to sports betting, helping to secure strategic partnerships with sportsbooks including MGM Resorts International, FanDuel and Caesars.

Before joining the NHL, Lehanski served as Vice President of Marketing Solutions at Clear Channel Advantage where he worked with Fortune 500 advertisers/marketers to develop, sell, and activate fully integrated media/marketing solutions that leveraged all of Clear Channel’s assets. Previously, Lehanski was the co-founder and Vice President of, an online company focused on the distribution of sports memorabilia and collectibles with a long-term goal of consolidating the industry. He also spent several years as a consultant on the agency side at SFX Sports and Clarion Sports & Entertainment.

Lehanski was named to SportsBusiness Journal’s Forty Under 40 Class of 2012, recognizing executives for excellence and innovation in their industry before the age of 40. He earned a B.A. with a major in economics from Bowdoin College and currently resides in Ridgewood, NJ with his wife Alison and two sons, Eddie and Leo.

The 4 Biggest Threats to IT Procurement Managers in an Uncertain Economy (2024)
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