Published: Wed, December 05, 2018
Sports | By Juana Wells

Red Wings get cash windfall from NHL's Seattle expansion

Red Wings get cash windfall from NHL's Seattle expansion

Bettman says the notion of the arena being done in time for the start of the 2020-21 season was doubtful at best.

The Seattle team will play at the city's Seattle Center Arena, formerly the KeyArena, which is due to undergo a $700 million facelift.

"Seattle's one of the fastest-growing cities in the country", Commissioner Gary Bettman said recently.

Early this year, the Seattle Times polled fans on a potential name for the expansion team, with the Sockeyes, Totems and Metropolitans getting into the Top 3.

"Today is an exciting and historic day for our League as we expand to one of North America's most innovative, attractive and fastest-growing cities", NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement.

Houston was hoping to join Seattle as an expansion National Hockey League franchise in the next two years, but Bettman said Tuesday there is no plan to grow beyond 32 teams.

That's the only change, but if you need a refresher, here's what the NHL's divisions will look like beginning with the 2021-22 season.

The Board of Governors opened its annual two-day December meeting on Monday in Sea Island, Ga. The Penguins have four players with NMCs under contract in 2021 - Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Phil Kessel, and Kris Letang. Detroit-born movie producer Jerry Bruckheimer, 75, is part of the ownership group.

A three-quarters vote of the current 31 owners is needed to confirm Seattle as the league's newest franchise.

The board's nine-member executive committee recommended proceeding with the expansion application back in October after a presentation that included Bonderman, Bruckheimer and Leiweke.

We don't know a lot about the team's plans as of yet, only that they'll be playing at a renovated KeyArena (former home of the SuperSonics) in downtown Seattle and that they'll be joining the Western Conference's Pacific division. The vote is expected on Tuesday.

The Seattle Hockey Partners will pay NHL owners $650 million to join. Adding Seattle triggers division realignment that bumps the Arizona Coyotes to the Central Division.

Western Conference Finals Stanley Cup Finals (such an unprecedented accomplishment for an expansion team that my memory of how far the Knights' run went was initially incorrect because it still seems like insane talk).

"There's going to be a built-in rivalry (with Vancouver)", said Tod Leiweke, Seattle Hockey Partners president and CEO.

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