SBD/December 19, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies

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  • Viva Las Vegas: NHL Reportedly Aiming To Be First Major Pro Sports League In Sin City

    Having its awards show in Las Vegas gives the NHL a tie-in to the city

    The NHL "wants to be the first major professional sports league to put a franchise in Las Vegas," and the city is second on the league's list "behind Seattle" if the NHL were to expand, according to Bob McKenzie of TSN.ca. McKenzie: "People in Quebec City may be saying, 'Hey, what about us?' Well, keep in mind, there's no rule that says if they expand, that they only expand by two teams." The possibility of "expanding by three teams, with Quebec City being one of them, is at least something that will be considered." There is "lots of money in expansion," bringing a "windfall that isn't shared with the players or anyone else, just the owners" (TSN.ca, 12/18). YAHOO SPORTS' Greg Wyshynski noted the NHL "obviously has some relationships built in Vegas through having the NHL Awards there, and would find no shortage of interested minority owners on the West Coast." It is "interesting that the NHL is into being the first 'big four' league in the market," as the league had "the same chance in Oklahoma City, but passed on that opportunity" in the '90s. Wyshynski: "My main concern, shared by the Vegas locals I've spoken to about expansion, has always been about the entertainment dollar." Night games would be "competing with every conceivable entertainment option." Las Vegas also has a "24-hour job cycle," meaning many fans could be "working when the games are being played" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 12.18).

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