NHL Commissioner Bettman Says Flames' Saddledome "Antiquated," Needs Replacing
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman on Wednesday called the Flames' Scotiabank Saddledome an "old, antiquated building" and said it "needs to be replaced," according to Kristen Odland of the CALGARY HERALD. Built in '83, the Saddledome is the "second oldest" arena in the NHL. There "hasn’t been a peep" about the C$890M CalgaryNEXT project "in months." However, that "doesn’t mean dialogue has ceased." Bettman indicated that he met with Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi on Wednesday for an hour and called their meeting "cordial, open," and "candid." Bettman said that it is a "process to determine a vision for a new arena, its location, and how the economics will work." Bettman was asked about a timeline for a new facility in Calgary in a perfect world, answering, "Yesterday." Bettman: "I’m not trying to be funny or sarcastic. But the fact is, the longer this goes, in some respects it gets a little more difficult. Building costs go up. The amount of time it’ll take to get into a new arena situation will be longer." Bettman said that he "hoped the new Rogers Place and the Edmonton Ice District was 'inspirational.'" He said that if that project can "serve as motivation or a framework for getting a new arena built in Calgary as quickly as possible, it would be positive" (CALGARY HERALD, 3/16).