Praise Be To Foley, Las Vegas NHL Hockey Website

Practice Facility In Summerlin Breaking Ground Next Week

After finally shoring up all the legal mumbo jumbo, the NHL Practice Facility slated to be built in Downtown Summerlin East of Pavilion Center Drive and South of Griffith Peak Drive will break ground officially on October 5th.

There will be a ceremony, open to the public, at 1:30 PM and will be attended by The Creator, practice facility guru Murray Craven, Steve Sisolak and Susan Brager from Clark County, and Kevin Orrock from the Howard Hughes Corp.

If you decide to head out there next Wednesday, you can expect a few speeches, a nice little shovel in the ground photo op (my favorite), and some very generic speeches about the importance of the facility to the community. It’s gonna be electric.

Nonetheless, it’s great to see construction of this thing finally getting underway. Craven mentioned earlier that the process is expected to take about 42 weeks, which would put the estimated completion date in late July to early August. That would give them plenty of time to be ready for training camp next season.

This is of course, if there are no debilitating hiccups in the next 10 months. The facility is set to have two sheets of ice, offices for the entire staff, and a restaurant which will be open to the public. Knowing how The Creator does things, it’s going to be the best practice facility in the NHL the moment it opens, there’s no doubt about that.

So, we’ll see ya on October 5th, bring your shovels. (Don’t really bring shovels, you’ll look weird.)

Focus May Finally Shift To Marketing

Priorities may finally be starting to change in the offices of the still yet to be named Las Vegas NHL franchise. A franchise that was officially awarded 96 days ago and since has added a GM, assistant GM, eight front office staffers with the word director in their title, a scouting staff that recently hit the double digits, multiple ticket executives, a few corporate sales people, and a host of others. It was a staff of 40 (by our count) and prior to today, had an incredibly light focus on marketing.

Via press release, the team announced Kim Frank as the new Vice President of Marketing. She’s a former Washington Capital and has also worked in the D.C. area with the Wizards and Georgetown University tallying an impressive 18 years in the sports marketing business.

But that’s not all., the chosen hiring agency for the new franchise, is also accepting applications for Street Team members who are described to be in charge of off-site events, communicating general hockey information, and INTERACTING WITH FANS.

I don’t use caps lock often, but when I do

Over the first 100 days the focus has been on hockey operations; getting the staff in place that will make sure the team on the ice is a winner. No one can ever argue with that focus, because without that piece, all else is moot. However, the same can be said in reverse. A fan without a team isn’t really a fan, but a team without fans isn’t really a team either.

The team’s Twitter has 33,000 followers. Facebook has 10,400 fans. Instagram has a following of over 5,800. Oh, and remember that story from last week, more than 16,000 season tickets have been sold! There’s a fan base here, there’s just nothing being done to cultivate it.

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Las Vegas Something Knights Jersey Concepts

Here’s what we know. The team name will be unveiled sometime in November, unless it gets delayed again. They will select Desert, Silver, or Golden Knights. It’s possible the team is Vegas Something Knights rather than Las Vegas Something Knights. And the jerseys will include two things, a “steel mesh” and a Red Rock inspired color.

With those ideas in mind, we had our pair of graphic designers take a stab at what they think the team will look like when they hit the ice next October.

First off, here’s our resident jersey concept artist Isaac Palestino’s take on what The Creator may have in mind.

knights-mesh-final knights-mesh-away-final

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Meet The Professional Scouting Staff

Despite being reported last week, the Las Vegas franchise has spent much of this week sending out press releases confirming the hires of four new professional scouts. They are Jim McKenzie, Vince Williams, Mike Foligno, and Václav Nedomanský and they join Kelly Kisio and David Conte rounding out the staff tasked with scouting NHL players in preparation for the Expansion Draft in June.

We’ve already told you a little bit about both Kisio and Conte, now lets take a look at the new quartet joining the front office.

Jim McKenzie – Most recently a scout with the Florida Panthers, working with fellow Las Vegas staff members Scott Luce and Erin Ginnell. McKenzie played in the NHL for 15 years for the Whalers, Stars, Penguins, Jets, Coyotes, Ducks, Capitals, Devils, and Predators. He won the Stanley Cup in 2003 as a member of the Devils. In January of 2000 he was claimed off waivers by George McPhee and the Washington Capitals.

Vince Williams – Most recently the head coach of the Orlando Solar Bears, the ECHL affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs. He had an extended minor league hockey career but never broke through to the NHL. 

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Team Name Announcement Delayed Again, Novemeber Now Likely

First we thought they may have a name when the team was awarded at the end of last June. Then we were told it should be announced in September “when it cools off.” After that we all kid of just assumed Frozen Fury weekend would make sense. Last we heard it was scheduled for mid-October.

Well now, The Creator told us via the RJ that the announcement is likely to occur at the end of October or even November.

We had a webinar (Thursday) with Adidas and the NHL and we’re still tweaking the logo and the use of the colors. It probably means we’re going to have to push back the big announcement because it’s going to take time to get everything printed on the shirts and hats. The jerseys will take a little longer to produce. -The Creator

Eye-yey-eye! Just tell us already.

The Creator also mentioned the fact that getting the time on Toshiba Plaza was a bit of a challenge. Based on that comment we have to assume they are shooting for a Friday or Saturday unveiling. In October, the only Friday or Saturday open on the Plaza is October 14th, which may even be unavailable as it falls between two Los Angeles Lakers games. In November the 11th, 12th, 18th, and 25th are all available.

We’re getting real close. But we want it to be perfect. -The Creator

Unfortunately it’s not going be perfect… he already ruled out the name Rat Pack.

Oh yeah, and by the way, while you wait, buy a Las Vegas NHL T-Shirt!

World Cup Of Expansion Players: Part II

Let’s try this again. Before the World Cup started I gave you a few players to keep an eye out for. Unfortunately, I kind of whiffed on a few, especially Justin Abdelkader. I don’t know why I thought he’d have a good tournament. The early rugged, gritty style by the US was perfect for Abdelkader. The Former MSU Spartan had a -2 rating, and four shots in two games. I may be unfairly picking on the Detroit winger because the rest of the squad was just as bad. On the other hand, Sweden’s Jakob Silfverberg is tied for third on the team in shots. Also, Silver’s picking up ice time on Sweden’s powerful penalty killing line. Nice production from a Swede that could end up in Las Vegas.

Let’s go another round and examine a few more players that could be targeted by GM George McPhee.

Team Sweden

Carl Hagelin: Speed, speed, and more speed. That’s what Hagelin’s game is all about. Speed and his sick flow. Optical tracking data ranked the Swede the fastest skater in the NHL at a top speed of 23MPH. He’s had up and down seasons, but it really has to do with what system in which he’s playing. Coming off of a Cup, Hagelin perfectly fit the Penguins style of play, particularly in the postseason. The HBK line was a major difference for Pittsburgh. The speed and pressure from Hagelin, Nick Bonino, and Phil Kessel caught defenses flat footed. Hagelin’s breakout speed helped the Pens beat more physical teams like the Capitals. The speedy Swede is a very talented player, but can get lost for more than a few games a year. The Penguins could expose Hagelin and his $4 million dollar price tag. He may go a week without a point, but speed costs money. Used correctly, the Michigan Wolverine could bring offensive excitement to Las Vegas.

Read More Podcast #38: USA Hockey = Bad

Ken and Jason recap USA/Canada and then get in to some Vegas hockey talk. Hosted by Ken Boehlke and Jason Pothier.

  • USA eliminated from World Cup of Hockey. What does it actually mean?
  • Was this an issue of talent, or style, a collection of both?
  • Are players are actually passionate about this tournament?
  • The Creator not invited to the Board of Governors meeting.
  • The relationship between a sold out building and the construction of the Las Vegas franchise.
  • Why is Harambe still in the news?

And much more…

We are on iTunes as well as Stitcher. Subscribe now!

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Sold Out Means Sold Out, No Matter How Skeptical You Are

So the Las Vegas NHL franchise has sold out the building in year one, or at least that was the reported news yesterday. But there’s a recurring theme popping up on talk shows, TV news, watercolor conversations, and most notably, the comment sections on sites and social medias like ours at

The building may be sold out now, but these are just deposits, what happens when the organization asks for that other 90% of the total season ticket price? Will they still be sold out then?

We are cognizant that conversion is not going to be 100 percent, but based on the fact that we had 5,000 people come to an open house in August, the multiple touch points we’ve now made, and our great hires on the hockey side. We’re confident that we will convert at a very strong number. -Todd Pollock, VP of Ticketing

Is this a biased or even hopeful answer? It’s an understandable question, and one I hate to admit, but for a while there I wondered as well. But after having the entire process of why the sold out announcement was made so early spelled out to me, that concern can be filed away in the same dark back room I put such issues as “Can hockey work in the desert.” or the more specific “Does The Creator actually have the money to buy the team?”

Simply put, it’s a non-issue, and I’ll explain why.

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Season Tickets Sold Out!

The Las Vegas NHL organization has sold out of season tickets. That’s right, the city that’s been described as not ready for professional sports and not a good place for hockey has sold out a 17,500 seat building before they have a name or player.

The team announced the news through a press release today.

The Las Vegas NHL Franchise announced today that it has received deposits on 16,000 season tickets, which represents all of the season tickets available for the 2017-2018 season. This momentous achievement was reached approximately 18 months after the ticket drive — which had an initial goal of 10,000 tickets — was launched. More than 5,000 tickets were sold within two days and 9,000 season tickets were sold within a month of the launch of the ticket drive.

Tell us more!

We launched a season ticket drive in February 2015 to demonstrate the long-term viability of an NHL franchise in Las Vegas and were able to surpass our initial goal within months. Since then, we have hired an outstanding General Manager, Assistant General Manager, Director of Player Personnel, Director of Amateur Scouting, Capologist, Director of Analytics and many highly qualified Scouts. Today, we are proud to announce that season tickets for the 2017 season are sold out. -The Creator

The team is still accepting season ticket deposits that will be placed on a wait list. They’ll also have around 500-1,000 single game tickets available for each game.

We’ve long been saying this, but the news of selling out more than a year in advance of hockey goes to show that these tickets are going to be some of the toughest in town to get. The franchise opener may go down as one of the biggest events in city history too.

This is a truly historic event for the Las Vegas community, the NHL and all of our fans. I would like to thank everyone who has supported and continues to support our efforts to make the Las Vegas NHL franchise a success. -The Creator

Suck it world, Las Vegas is sold out, something more than half the league cannot boast, and we don’t even have an adjective on our team name yet!

Creator Not Invited To Board Of Governors Meeting This Week

In an interview with Steve Carp of the RJ, The Creator revealed he will not be attending the NHL’s Board of Governors meeting scheduled for this Friday. The reason given was because he has not fully paid off the ridiculous $500 million entry fee the league required to award Las Vegas a franchise.

Last September all the news surrounding the Board of Governors meeting was about the official presentations of Las Vegas and Quebec City. But they also took a look at early returns on 3v3 overtime, concussion protocols, coaches challenges, and more. All important aspects that will affect the Las Vegas TBA Knights when they hit the ice in October.

The Creator’s lost invitation is just another example of the league not doing any favors to help promote their newest organization. Right now on, the only mention of Las Vegas is a news aggregate box way down on the right side. Any time you see a team list, Las Vegas is not there. Head over to the shop, Las Vegas is no where to be found. Of course, there’s nothing to sell and nothing to really show, but would it not make sense to have placeholders? A little greyed out name that says Las Vegas. A shop that says coming soon. These are little things that keep the new franchise front of mind, something the NHL seems uninterested in doing.

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