Vegas group makes expansion pitch, fields ‘a lot of really good questions’

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A statement from Bill Foley, the man who hopes to bring an NHL team to Sin City:

“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!”

Exciting times, as the exclamation mark shows.

Of course, Foley’s assertion that the market has “clearly demonstrated” that it wants an NHL team is up for debate. When the Jets returned to Winnipeg, season tickets sold out in minutes. The demand wasn’t quite as frenetic in Vegas, a market that even the NHL has conceded is a “unique” one. 

So while many believe that Vegas is a “sure thing” to get an expansion team, it’ll be interesting to see if any of the owners express doubts about the market’s viability — even after taking into account the $500 million expansion fee they stand to divvy up.

“We got asked a lot of really good questions,” Foley told Sportsnet after today’s presentation. “We had the answers to all the questions. Pretty animated. It was interesting.”

Related: Former Canadian PM Mulroney represents Quebec City bid