Seattle has never been home to an NHL franchise, and it has not housed an NBA organization since the SuperSonics left for Oklahoma City in 2008. Now the city is prepared to make major renovations to KeyArena with the hope of wooing a new hockey or basketball team in the near future. So Ray Allen may finally get his wish.
The Oak View Group, which is heading the renovations, brought a couple of big names into the project on Wednesday, announcing billionaire businessman David Bonderman and Hollywood film producer Jerry Bruckheimer to the team. Bonderman is also a minority owner of the Boston Celtics, and Bruckheimer, in addition to being tight with NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, has expressed an interest in eventually owning an NHL team.
— Ed Murray (@MayorEdMurray) June 7, 2017
With the Vegas Golden Knights joining the NHL for the 2017-18 season, that gives the Western Conference an odd number of teams, which could give the league incentive to add another western team to even things out. That’s presumably one reason why Seattle mayor Ed Murray thinks the renovations will lead to the arrival of an NHL team first. From the Seattle Times:
In an interview Wednesday, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray said the new additions to OVG “will lead to the NHL sooner than the NBA. I believe the NBA has been pretty clear that their owners have a pretty good TV contract that, financially, they don’t want to break up at this point.
“I do think the NHL will be here sooner than the NBA,” he added. “But I think both of them will be here. I think this is the arena that will get us here.”