NHL: Seattle awarded 32nd franchise from 2021-22 season

NHL votes to give expansion franchise to Seattle

But the process can officially start now after Tuesday's announcement and Tippett is excited to get the ball rolling.

The expansion team will join North America's preeminent ice hockey league for its 2021/22 season after being approved in a unanimous vote by the NHL's board of governors. There was a frisson of excitement in the summer of 2015 when the National Hockey League announced that it would allow interested parties to submit expansion proposals, but a year later Bettman said that it was granting a team to just one of the applicants - Las Vegas.

Seattle will play in downtown at what was KeyArena, which is being redeveloped for a privately financed $700 million arena under a plan approved by the city earlier this year.

The to-be-named Seattle team will reside in the Pacific when it begins play in 2021, while the Coyotes will shift to the Central Division. The rules for the latest expansion draft, including how many players teams will be allowed to protect, will be announced at a later date.

"Today is an exciting and historic day for our league as we expand to one of North America's most innovative, attractive and fastest-growing cities", said Gary Bettman.

J.F. Berube is selected by the Vegas Golden Knights during the 2017 NHL Awards and Expansion Draft at T-Mobile Arena on June 21, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. In 1917, the franchise become the first USA -based team to win the Stanley Cup after defeating the Montreal Canadiens for the title.

Hayton, the young center who who considered a surprise draft pick during the 2018 National Hockey League draft, was held scoreless in two preseason appearances.

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The official grant of the franchise Tuesday puts largely to rest about a century of caterwauling, finagling, duplicitousness, mendacity, grandstanding, errors of fact and fiction, temporary successes and abject failures regarding major league hockey - and major league basketball - and Seattle. "He's going to start off on our opening day roster and we're just going to take it day by day here".

As CEO Tod Leiweke said, "That's when we all knew that this was the right idea". "If it were someplace else, I wouldn't have done it".

More than 30,000 fans have already paid a deposit on season tickets.

Starting with the 2021-22 season, the Seattle franchise will play as part of the Western Conference in the Pacific Division. Today is a great day for the fans and we owe them so much. Leiweke said arena renovations will cost $800 million and the addition of a state-of-the-art practice facility makes it a total investment of over $1.5 billion. But today I think about the fans.

According to Station Index, Seattle is the U.S.' 14th largest TV market, and it's the largest city without a winter sport.

Seattle also has a junior hockey league, the Thunderbirds.

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