“They’ll probably have a pretty good home record.”
This quote was reiterated by just about every player during media availability at the 2016 NHL Awards. What could they be referring to? Well, with the reality that Las Vegas is a very likely place to be getting a hockey team, the topic of the potential expansion was the hottest thing to discuss.
We’re one day out from a press conference with Gary Bettman – the National Hockey League commissioner – and everyone is still waiting for confirmation of whether or not Las Vegas is getting a hockey team.
“It’s exciting. To have a professional sports team in Vegas is something that seems to become more of a reality; hockey, football or whatever it may be. It would be an exciting place to come and play. I think with expansion in the first place, it’s obviously good for the league,” said the Chicago Blackhawks’ Patrick Kane. “Players get more jobs and you get more players in the league. At the same time, I think Vegas would be a great venue. They’ll probably have a pretty good home record.”
While many players could see great potential in the league expansion, many are skeptical of the potential distractions. Any young hockey player looks at Las Vegas as a place to get away to, not necessarily to come for business purposes.
“We’re coming in here to do a job, and at that time it’s going to be to win a hockey game,” says Dallas Stars Captain Jamie Benn about the expansion.
Anaheim Ducks’ Ryan Kesler put it best, stating that, “you can get yourself in trouble in all 50 states. For me, we’re professionals and we get ourselves ready to play and perform.”
Overall, the opinions regarding the prospective expansion to the National Hockey League are very positive. The concerns of the players seem insignificant when considering the likelihood of the expansion happening.
“This is going to be a great town to have a hockey team in. It’s going to be an exciting place to come and I’m sure it’s going to do great,” said Jamie Benn.