Seattle expected to land National Hockey League franchise

NHL votes to give expansion franchise to Seattle

NHL votes to give expansion franchise to Seattle

The NHL Board of Governors signed off and commissioner Gary Bettman announced after the vote that the league's 32nd franchise will enter the league in 2021-22 as a member of the Pacific Division.

Tuesday, the Board of Governors approved the NHL's 32nd team with Seattle entering the league for the 2021-2022 season.

"I have business cards I'm going to have to toss out that say Seattle 2020", joked team president and CEO Tod Leiweke, who said he expects the venue open in March or April 2021.

There have been several attempts at solving Seattle's arena issues and landing either an National Hockey League or NBA team in the years since the Sonics left, but none had the support of the city or the private money attached until now.

The Seattle team will join the Western Conference's Pacific Division with the Arizona Coyotes being bumped over to the Central Division for the 2021/22 campaign.

Seattle will draft one player from every team's roster except for Las Vegas.

NHL votes to give expansion franchise to Seattle

Seattle's ownership group led by billionaire David Bonderman and a number of minority partners, including Hollywood producer Jerry Bruckheimer, will pay an expansion fee of US$650 million. The Seattle Metropolitans were the first American team to win the Stanley Cup, defeating the Montreal Canadians in 1917.

The news means that Seattle will have a representative in three of the four USA major leagues, with the Seattle NHL outfit set to join the Seattle Seahawks of the National Football League (NFL) and the Seattle Mariners of Major League Baseball (MLB), along with the Seattle Sounders of Major League Soccer (MLS). And with Tuesday's formal news that the league was expanding, again, but this time to Seattle, a second Quebec team and eighth in Canada will remain very much a fantasy.

Helin notes that the only way a Seattle franchise could play in the National Basketball Association right now is if a current team is sold and relocated, earmarking the Memphis Grizzlies and New Orleans Pelicans as teams to watch out for. "This is just a great thing for Seattle and I'm so honored to be part of it".

According to Emily Kaplan of ESPN, no one seems to mind that Seattle will play with the same rules previously offered to a team which went to the Stanley Cup in their inaugural season. "If it were someplace else, I wouldn't have done it".

On its own, OVG added a $70 million training facility on the grounds of Northgate Mall, which needs to be ready in the summer ahead of when the team begins to train.

"Certainly we're going to be able to lay eyes on players for an additional season", said Leiweke, who's only hockey hire to date is adding former NHL coach Dave Tippett as a senior advisor. "I think about the fans". It could also be Kansas City, which built an arena in 2007 and is still without a major-league tenant.

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