"A Seattle ownership group has been authorized to file an application for an NHL expansion team, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said Thursday", the league announced. Bettman also said that Seattle is the only place being considered for an expansion team at this time.
The NHL Board of Governors gathered today in Florida for their final meetings of the League's Centennial year. "We will let them make a case and if they also want to try to do a study for selling season tickets, they can", Bettman said. "This is a process that we go through". The expansion team in Seattle will cost $650 million, while Vegas was $500 million. The Vegas Golden Knights began operations this season and are in the playoff chase. That means a team likely wont be playing in Quebec Citys 18,259-seat Videotron Centre in the foreseeable future.
The 7-1 Seattle City Council vote also paved the way for an National Basketball Association franchise to immediately return to Seattle.
Currently, there are 16 teams in the Eastern Conference and 15 teams in the West. "Our plan is just to look at Seattle at this point".
A new arena is now being built in the city with the hope of attracting National Hockey League and NBA teams as its first occupants. It was Backes third game back after he missed 12 straight following surgery to remove part of his colon to help treat his diverticulitis, a disease characterized by inflammation in the intestinal tract.
Although Seattle has never had an NHL team, the Seattle Metropolitans, who played in the Pacific Coast Hockey Association from 1915-24, won the Stanley Cup in 1917, defeating the Montreal Canadiens 3-1 in a best-of-5 series, the NHL said.