The fate of the Las Vegas and Quebec City bids to gain entry into the National Hockey League now rest in the hands of 10 men.
On Tuesday, the Bill Foley-led group as well as Quebecor made their final pitches to the NHL’s Executive Committee on Tuesday to bring their respective cities to the NHL as the 31st and 32nd teams in the league.
After the pitches, the committee will meet and report to the NHL Board of Governors. There is no set timeline for when a decision on either of the two candidates will come, but one should expect to hear something around the Board of Governors meetings on December 7-8 in Palm Springs.
The committee that met with both parties on Tuesday consists of 10 NHL owners, including the chair Jeremy Jacobs, owner of the Boston Bruins. Though the decision will come in the form of a 30-team vote, it’s ultimately the Executive Committee and commissioner Gary Bettman who will make the final recommendations to the overall group.
A vote of 24-of-30 is required for a team to gain entrance to the league. Should Las Vegas and/or Quebec City gain expansion into the league, the ownership groups will then have to pay a $500 million expansion fee. That amount would be roughly $677 million in Canadian currency at this time.
In a statement released after presenting, Foley said the the group is thankful for the opportunity.
Today, we made a formal presentation to the NHL Executive Committee in New York City as part of our effort to secure an NHL team in Las Vegas. This meeting was the result of successfully completing three previous phases of the expansion application process. We made it to this point because of the passionate fans that helped us secure more than 13,500 season ticket deposits and commitments. As we wait for a final decision, I want to thank the NHL for this opportunity and the season ticket holders who have clearly demonstrated that Vegas Wants Hockey!
With all of the phases and presentations done, both Las Vegas and Quebec City now have to wait a little over two months before, hopefully, finding out a final decision on whether they will begin play in the NHL for the 2017-18 season.
Michael is a former Managing Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s covered the Buffalo Sabres, along with the NHL in general, for various outlets since 2009. His work has been featured on outlets such as Yahoo, Sports Illustrated and Fox Sports.