Dreams do come true. Seattle will officially get an NHL team.
The National Hockey League’s Board of Governors announced Tuesday that Seattle has been awarded an expansion franchise that will begin playing at remodeled KeyArena in October 2021.
“Today is a historic moment in Seattle sports history,” Tod Leiweke, CEO of NHL Seattle said in a press release.“ Our fans are at the core of this movement to bring an NHL team to Seattle and today we celebrate in honor of them.”
Fans have long expressed a desire to bring an NHL team to the Emerald City. In March, Seattle ownership launched a season ticket drive that surpassed the NHL’s season ticket goal of 10,000 in just 12 minutes, and so far, the NHL to Seattle movement has 32,000 depositors for season tickets.
It’s been nearly 100 years since the collapse of the Seattle Metropolitans, the first US-based team to win a Stanley Cup in 1917. The Seattle Totems, the city’s professional ice hockey team from 1944-1975, won three championships in the Central Hockey League, but fell apart after acquiring a substantial amount of debt.
While it’s uncertain if the Metropolitans or Totems will ever resurface, the Seattle Cougars, Eagles, Rainiers and Sockeyes, amongst others, are all in play for the 32nd NHL team’s name.
The NHL’s expansion could also unearth a push for a Seattle SuperSonics revival. The former Seattle NBA team was shipped off to Oklahoma City in 2008 by owner Clay Bennett. WNBA Champions, the Seattle Storm, currently occupy KeyArena, where Seattle's new NHL team will play.
Can you imagine what it would look like to have another professional basketball team back in the Pacific Northwest? Welcome back, Seattle vs. Portland Trail Blazers rivalry.