After discussions broke out between NHL management and the NHLPA about redefining the league’s overtime format, both parties have announced the possibility of team expansion to either Quebec, Seattle or Las Vegas.
The NHL in Sin City
Situated behind one of Las Vegas’ landmarks, sits the skeleton of MGM’s $375 million, 22,000-seat arena that plans to host Nevada’s first professional hockey team.
The arena has a grand opening scheduled for April 2016 and includes sponsorships from Toshiba and Coca Cola.
Toshiba Plaza – a 2-acre entertainment expo located outside the front entrance – will host a number of entertainment festivities, including concerts and holiday celebrations.
Both Toshiba and Coca Cola share partnerships with Anschultz Entertainment Group with arenas based in Los Angeles and London.
Naming rights values of arenas that play host to NBA or NHL teams typically range from $2 million to $10 million per year, with most deals lasting 10 to 30 years. An arena without a team might command $1 million per year less.
That naming rights issue surfaced because prospective team owner Bill Foley is working on creating an NHL team in Las Vegas that would play at the MGM-AEG arena — if the NHL awards a franchise to Foley.
Prospective NHL team owner, Bill Foley and his minority partners, the Maloof brothers of Las Vegas, have secured $150 deposits on season tickets from more than 10,000 residential fans and hopes to reach 13,000 to petition for an NHL team in Vegas.
Although the NHL plans to put the brakes on expansion until the 2017-18 season, the question is to whether even invest in expansion despite the architectural progress in both Las Vegas and Quebec.
The NBA in Las Vegas
Former UNLV and NBA player, Jackie Robinson, announced on Wednesday he is undertaking a $1.4 billion project along the Vegas Strip in efforts to bring a professional basketball team to the Sin City.
The ceremony attracted over 300 spectators and 600 foreign investors, who – under the EB-5 visa program – will be granted said documentation only if they donate $500,000 or more to the project.
In order to make room for an NBA organization in Las Vegas, Jackie Robinson proposed a conference realignment, sending two Western Conference teams over to the East Conference.
Meanwhile, UNLV’s arena, Thomas & Mack Center is slated for a $70 million renovation. Highlights of UNLV’s face lift include new mechanical and air systems, expanded concession areas, added bathrooms, an improved main concourse and new lower bowl seats.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports