The Commonwealth Games Federation boss Mike Hooper says the games could be cut from 17 to 10 sports to keep the event alive beyond 2018.
Glasgow will stage this year's event and the Gold Coast in 2018, but no bidders have yet come forward as 2022 hosts.
Hooper, a New Zealander, says reducing the number of sports could encourage interest.
He says clearly the cost structures associated with putting on a 10 sports Games versus a 17 sports Games is vastly different.
Ten sports is the minimum allowed by the Commonwealth Games Federation, with 17 the maximum.
After 13 years in charge, Hooper will stand down from his position after the Games in Glasgow this year.