Somebody wants to bring the NHL to Seattle and that somebody is from Vancouver.
Victor Coleman, a billionaire who grew up in Vancouver and now lives in Los Angeles is appears ready and willing to bring NHL hockey to the city of Seattle. Just one catch: they need to build an arena first.
Coleman took a step towards fixing that problem, entering into a non-binding agreement with Chris Hansen, the man who wants to bring the Sonics back to Seattle. Hansen has stated that he has no interest in owning an NHL franchise.
Right now it appears that bringing the NHL to Seattle is predicated on Hansen getting an NBA franchise. Hansen has already brokered a deal for public money to help finance a new arena to house the Sonics, provided that Hansen purchases an NBA franchise. So unless something changes, no public money will be spent on building an arena for just an NHL team.
Seattle has proven itself to be a great sports town and would would probably be a good fit for an NHL team, under the right circumstances. It’s too bad that Victor Coleman needs the NBA before he can bring hockey to the Emerald City, because I believe that Seattle is ripe for the picking if an NHL franchise could get in before the NBA. An NBA franchise will surely hog the media spotlight when/if it returns and will keep it for a prolonged honeymoon phase.
Still, I think Seattle is big enough to host both an NBA and NHL franchise. With a metropolitan population greater than 4 million people, Seattle is comparable in population to Phoenix and is significantly larger than Minneapolis-St Paul and Denver, all of which are home to a team from each of the four major pro sports leagues (NFL, MLB, NBA and NHL).
If Seattleites are surprised by the amount of Blue Jays fans that invade Safeco Field on an annual basis, they won’t know what hit them if the Canucks ever came to town. Like most Canucks fans, I selfishly would love to see the NHL come to Seattle because it would give the Canucks a true geographical rival for the first time in their history.
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Featured Image: Seattle via Shutterstock