NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 27, 2014

Talk of NHL expansion growing,  updates on the Penguins and Avalanche, plus the latest on Paul Stastny, Jamie Benn and more.

NHL expansion to Las Vegas a done deal?

NHL expansion to Las Vegas a done deal?

THE VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Tony Gallagher cites sources claiming NHL expansion to Las Vegas is a done deal, other than determining who will become the owner. Gallagher also notes the number of visit league commissioner Gary Bettman has recently made to Seattle, where a new arena is expected to be built. Bettman has acknowledged interest from “multiple groups” in Seattle, Las Vegas, Kansas City and Quebec City. Gallagher also suggests the Florida Panthers could be ripe for relocation, for despite their lengthy arena lease, the city of Sunrise “can’t seem to see the point of carrying on much longer.”

SPORTS BUSINESS NEWS’ Howard Bloom claims “NHL expansion – four teams added by 2017, Quebec City, Toronto, Seattle, and Las Vegas $1.4b in expansion fees.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I don’t doubt the league is seriously considering expansion. Just the way the conferences are currently aligned (16 teams in the Eastern Conference, 14 in the Western Conference) suggests there’s room for two more franchises out west. And of course the opportunity to move into potentially lucrative markets is always enticing. The league is also doing it the right way by carefully weighing their options. That’s a big change over the last rash of expansion in the 1990s, where it seemed franchises were handed out to prospective owners willing to pay rich expansion fees with little thought to the viability of the potential markets.

One or two existing franchises could be relocated. It was reported this summer the city of Sunrise hired a consultant to examine the possibility of letting the Florida Panthers out of their arena lease.  However, until we see or hear an official announcement that these are done deals,  or that an existing franchise will be relocated, I advise not to get too wrapped up in the hype.  George Malik of Kukla’s Korner explains why

PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Penguins coach Mike Johnston could consider putting Pascal Dupuis and Patric Hornqvist with center Evgeni Malkin.

THE DENVER POST: After their significant improvement last season, the Colorado Avalanche face the challenge of meeting heightened expectations.

NHL.COM: Former Colorado Avalanche center Paul Stastny hopes to be a winner in his hometown of St. Louis. Stastny signed with the Blues this summer as a free agent.

DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Stars captain Jamie Benn is among Dallas’ 10 most eligible men.

USA TODAY: The New York Rangers are working on a new contract for defenseman John Moore.

TSN.CA: Stalled talks regarding a confidentiality pact are behind the delay in a settlement of Steve Moore’s civil suit against Todd Bertuzzi.

9 Comments

  1. That KK article cracks me up. on another note, move teams that dont make money to markets where they will, before putting expansion teams in those arenas and leaving no choice for owners who are losing money but to lose more money. If the NHL does expand there will be nowhere for troubled teams (troubled by bad lease deals or by no fanbases lack of places to build a new building etc.) To go. Those owners that lose money on a regular basis (Florida) should have some kind of option available to make some money and contribute to a healthy league. I agree with Malik

  2. It’s late August and people are bored out of their minds. So far that has been minimal indication that the NHL will proceed. Bettman has said for the past few years that there is a light interest in expansion teams, but nothing too serious.

    I think Las Vegas or Seattle could be coming sooner though to balance the teams in each conference.

    The Panthers are not going anywhere. The company of the Panthers, SSE, makes money with other forms of entertainment and the stadium is a hot spot for major concerts. I mean, twice we get Lady Gaga or Katie Perry (nauseating i know) in a year.

    If Nashville and Phoenix survived, so will the Panthers. They just have to start winning consistently and Tallon has thus far done a bang up job in reshaping the franchise for the next few years.

  3. I dont see any team being relocated. The way the league fought and fought to keep the Coyotes in Arizona suggests this to me.

  4. Hope there will be enough water in Vegas to make ice…..

  5. Right but by putting an NHL franchise in every city over 750 k in north america you start do devalue the franchises that are struggling now like the Nashvilles Arizonas and Floridas of the League, what if they continue to lose money? Who wants to buy them then knowing 1 they have lost money forever and 2 thereI is no place to move them to? How much you think the Florida panthers sell for in a 34 team league? Remember when baseball hockeycards and comics had value? Why dont they now? Over saturation if these other teams like Florida are makingmoney by other means (laughable example) people dont buy a hockey team to lose millions so they can put on concerts, thats not making money, its hopefully negating losses, why do they get revenue sharing?

  6. One thing to keep in mind is the money that ALL owners get if an expansion takes place. I believe each owner gets something like $40,000,000 a piece in expansion fees if all four of them were to expand. A large infusion of cash is always a tempting offer to people and NONE of this money is shared with the players.

    • True but its a borrowing from Peter to pay Paul scenario, whilethey get money from expansion Iit just kind of prolongs the process struggling franchises continue to struggle in5 10 years the owners still cant make it work and there is nowhere to move it to, and the franchise thatdoes make money has to float revenue sharing money which over time adds up quite a bit to teams that could have been moved to better markets and possibly made a profit, there fore increading the value of all the franchises. I have no issues with the markets the league wants to move to (accept Vegas) I just think expansion and not relocation of the bottom few teams is a dumb idea.

      • Id be pretty steamed if I just bought Arizona, or Florida when if I waited a year or if the NHL was more up front with me instead of telling me nah we are not going to expand…and I could have bought a team in Seattle Toronto or Quebec.

  7. A team would have to be relocated if the rumors are true, otherwise it does nothing to address the alignment issue. Two of the teams are decidedly eastern and two are likewise western. I suppose moving Florida to KC and the western conference would solve that problem. I personally think having two teams in the state of Florida is a farce anyway, no offence to the loyal fans of both teams.