The NHL has been in conversation about expanding the amount of teams from 30 to 32, and it’s closer than many believe. With these talks comes rumors and there are an abundance of them. In this blog, I will explain the three cities that, in my eyes, are top contenders. This is speculation of course and my view and I'm writing this blog solely to start a discussion up, so where would you want two more teams?To start with, Quebec City has garnered a lot of support from its faithful and all of Canada and I could envision an expansion team there. As a result of this Gary Bettman has made numerous statements pointing out the fact that there will eventually be a team back in Quebec City. However, the Canadian dollar stands in the dump at 75.33 cent and continuing to plummet. In contrast to the American dollar and in the event that it falls more, another Canadian team may be out of the question. Nonetheless, Quebec City would be a wonderful host for a team since they have the support an NHL sized stadium, perfect for a team.
Another city that would be a superb host would be Las Vegas, Nevada and as a result of this, people may be mildly surprising when the NHL has teams in Glendale, Arizona and Dallas, Texas. The difference though is that the citizens of Las Vegas are hungry for a team and the 13,200 season ticket deposits prove it. Even more is 36 351 469 people that visit the city annually and the reason why countless people visit Las Vegas is as there is so much there, even without sports. Additionally, in the past five years, Canadians have booked 1.8 million hotel rooms; this will contribute to a Las Vegas team as it would give those Canadians something to kill their gambling addiction. I truly believe Las Vegas would be the best destination for an NHL team due to the fact there will be revenue in contrast to other Sunbelt teams; not only that though, the NHL would pioneer something for the first time.
The last city which is a respectable destination is Seattle, Washington the only problem though is no one is stepping up to be the owner. Anyhow, Seattle has multiple major sport teams in the NFL and the MLB, which rank 18th and 21st respectively. Moreover, there are two WHL teams that play in Seattle, which rank 8th and 11th and adding those two averages it’s an annual average of 4,796 a year. Not to mention that the WHL is for prospects, just imagine a professional hockey team in Seattle. Plus Seattle ranks 20th in the US in population, which is ahead of Boston, Nashville, Denver and Washington, furthermore these teams all ranks above 22nd in the league. The size of Seattle may draw in an NHL team, and there are enough hockey fans to support a team.
To conclude, the NHL will be adding two additional teams in the near future and I see these teams as the biggest opportunity to add some revenue. It all boils down to which team will make the buck and which teams wouldn’t and with all of this in mind, the NHL needs to think long and hard about adding more teams.