The NHL, it appears, is going to expand, and that expansion could come as soon as June.
There’s a lot of ins and outs when it comes to expansion, but everybody just wants to know one thing: Will Las Vegas get a team?
“Yeah, they’re getting a team,” Yahoo! Sports’ Puck Daddy Greg Wyshynski said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “I can’t imagine a scenario in which they don’t. They met all of the thresholds they needed to meet insofar as season-ticket commitments outside of what the casinos are going to do ticket-wise. They’ve got the financial backing. There’s the appetite within the league to go there. The NHL really wants to be the first league into Vegas and they have the opportunity to do that if they commit to an expansion team there.”
The NHL is open to expanding in both Las Vegas and Quebec City, but only if it makes sense for all parties involved.
“They’ve long said that they’re comfortable just doing one team, but they don’t have to do both Vegas and Quebec City if they’re not comfortable with it,” Wyshynski said. “It doesn’t sound like they’re all that comfortable with Quebec. if I were a betting man – and obviously when you’re talking about Vegas it’s a very appropriate cliche to say – I would bet Vegas gets the team.”
And if it does, you know what that means: an expansion draft.
“The parameters right now for an expansion draft would be teams can protect seven forwards, three defensemen and one goalie,” Wyshynski explained. “On Puck Daddy, we kind of went through what it would have looked like if they had that scenario this season. I got to tell you: there’s going to be a hell of a lot of good defensemen going to that Vegas team if, in fact, that’s the way they’re going to work it. The fourth-best defenseman on every team is basically up for grabs. That’s actually going to give them a really nice base to build around if and when they get the team.”