NHL Board of Governors votes to expand to Las Vegas
The NHL Board of Governors has voted to approve an expansion franchise in Las Vegas, commissioner Gary Bettman announced Wednesday.
Over two-thirds of the NFL owners voted in favor of the team, which will be the first professional sports franchise in the state of Nevada.
The team will play in the Pacific Division in the Western Conference, the NHL said.
“We think this is a tremendously exciting opportunity, not only for Las Vegas, but for the league as well,” Bettman said.
The push for the league to expand to Las Vegas began in February 2015, when billionaire Bill Foley delivered a promise to sell 10,000 season ticket deposits.
The team already garners over 14,000 ticket deposits and will play at the newly opened T-Mobile Arena, which can seat 17,500 people for hockey.
Quebec City also applied for an expansion franchise, but the NHL said the Canadian city was not chosen because of the Canadian dollar as well as potential geographical imbalances.
The NHL said it had deferred Quebec City’s expansion application.
The team’s logo and nickname have not yet been announced.
The NHL’s 31st franchise is set to begin play in the 2017–18 season.