Gary Bettman Issues Major Statement on The NHL's 33rd Team

Published October 15, 2023 at 10:45 PM

The Board of Governors of the NHL convened last Wednesday, and the media got a chance to pick Commissioner Gary Bettman's brain on various matters, including the prospect of the league's expansion.

Bettman's initial stance was straightforward; there's no immediate expansion in the works. But, as he delved deeper into the issue, it became apparent that the idea is simmering in the league's long-term plans.

Bettman stated,
"The best answer I can give you is that we continually receive expressions of interest from places like Houston, Atlanta, Quebec, and Salt Lake City, but expansion is not on the agenda [...] But we are not in a mode where I say: 'OK, if you're interested in an expansion, submit your applications and we will evaluate them,' as we have done before. We are not there."

This suggests that while expansion isn't imminent, it's certainly on the league's radar. Hockey insider Kevin Weekes also chimed in, revealing the cities that have shown interest. Forsyth, near Atlanta, seems to be leading the race among cities without existing arenas.

Looking ahead, the expansion discussion will be one to follow closely. T

he financial aspect is intriguing, given that the Vegas Golden Knights' entry cost $500 million, the Seattle franchise's fee was $650 million, and the Senators were recently sold for a whopping $950 million.

It's safe to say that a new franchise's price tag will likely exceed a billion dollars.

As these discussions progress, Quebec, among other cities, is poised for the NHL's expansion plans.

While there's no official confirmation, it's a scenario that's gaining traction and could potentially bring substantial financial gains to the league and its owners.
October 16   |   40 answers
Gary Bettman Issues Major Statement on The NHL's 33rd Team

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