Usually preseason games are the least exciting item on the hockey schedule for fans, and especially season ticket holders who are forced to pay for them. Meaningless games in which many times the best players don’t even suit up, yet are charged equal to opening night of the regular season.
With an expansion team though, that’s a little different. It truly is the first opportunity fans will have to see a team with Vegas written across their chest play in the world’s greatest hockey league. Not to mention it’s the first chance to get to know the players, see the ice, and get the feel of what NHL hockey in Las Vegas will be like.
In an interview on the Vegas Hockey Hotline (starts at 1:14:40) GM George McPhee gave us some insight on the plans for first games in franchise history.
I’m typically fine with six games with an established club to get ready, but given that we are going to have a lot of new faces we’re going to play seven this year. I’d like to limit the travel, play the teams as close to us as possible. -George McPhee
McPhee recently mentioned the preseason schedule is 90% done.
For now, we’ve got 7 games lined up, it’s just a matter of getting the final word on the Olympics and some other things as to when we confirm. -McPhee
There will be three games at T-Mobile Arena. The other four will likely include three road games and one neutral site matchup. The previously rumored possibility of a preseason game a West Point has been ruled out, so it’s really anyone’s guess where those other four games might be. We do know that wherever the games are played, the entire Golden Knights roster will be on hand.
We’re prepared to put full squads out there and not do split squads games at this point. I’ve never been a fan of split squad games, we’ll see where that goes in the future. I’d like to be at all the games because we’ve got young men trying to make the team and the manager should be watching them. -McPhee
Until the team wins a Stanley Cup, there will never be a preseason with quite the same buzz as this one. Tickets will be highly coveted, probably even more coveted than some regular season games in the inaugural season.
This [preseason] is going to be completely different in that we’ve got all new faces and we are trying to really learn as much as we can about all of them in each and every game. It’ll be an interesting exercise and some very competitive games I imagine. -McPhee
I’m not so sure about the last part, but I do agree this preseason is going to be one for the ages for the Golden Knights.