National Hockey League approves Seattle expansion team

National Hockey League approves Seattle expansion team

National Hockey League approves Seattle expansion team

Houston, Quebec City and Toronto have all been touted as possible new homes someday.

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

Seattle will play in downtown at what was KeyArena, which is being redeveloped for a privately financed $700 million arena under a plan approved by the city earlier this year.

More than 75 years since her "Uncle Lester" - the Seattle Metropolitans co-founder from the celebrated Patrick "royal family" of hockey - used to bounce her on his knee, here she was on a podium with NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and others celebrating the creation of her hometown's latest franchise.

With the expansion, the $800 million Seattle Arena expansion project will break ground on Wednesday. "We knew there was an unbelievable following here so it's been fun to get to know people here and get to experience some of the excitement of bringing a team here". In October, the board's executive committee voted unanimously to push the expansion bid forward.

A team in Seattle balances the Eastern and Western Conferences at 16 teams apiece, but also requires realignment to even out the Central and Pacific Divisions.

The official grant of the franchise Tuesday puts largely to rest about a century of caterwauling, finagling, duplicitousness, mendacity, grandstanding, errors of fact and fiction, temporary successes and abject failures regarding major league hockey - and major league basketball - and Seattle.

Ryan Kelly, left, Otto Rogers and Rebecca Moloney cheer the announcement of a new NHL hockey team in Seattle at a celebratory party Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2018, in Seattle.

One year ago, National Hockey League commissioner Gary Bettman announced that Seattle had the green light to formally apply for an expansion franchise.

If there was a tinge of disappointment, it came with the decision that the team won't start until the 2021-22 season. "Might have got a little watery eyed there", said Barr, who has headed up the NHLtoSeattle.com website and been a voice for hockey fans in Seattle.

"Of course, everyone on the East Coast is so shocked to hear that Seattle won the first American Stanley Cup, " she said.

"We will keep the historic roof, and everything else will be new", Leiweke said, adding that construction begins tomorrow. "As we went through application process and got more and more information and did our due diligence process on the Seattle market, it certainly became even more attractive". That team lasted from 1915-24.

"But it's not fair to the fans or to the players to not have a 100-per-cent finished arena when we start".

Hosts Kathryn Tappen and Daren Millard speak onstage during the 2017 NHL Awards & Expansion Draft at T-Mobile Arena on June 21, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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