Tomorrow officially marks the opening of Las Vegas’ first new arena in 20 years. MGM and AEG, the financial backers behind the state of the art $350 million cathedral, have since day one claimed an NHL franchise is not necessary for the building to be profitable.
The financial model works either way. -Dan Beckman, AEG Chief Executive
However, during the opening week media tour there’s a certain underlying expectation MGM and AEG officials can’t seem to temper.
We are ready, and the venue is ready, in every aspect. We are super-optimistic and hopeful that the owners and the league want to do this. We just need to wait until the timing is right for them. -Mark Prows, MGM VP of Arenas
Rick Arpin, MGM Senior VP of Entertainment went on just about every radio show in Las Vegas over the past week or so, and whenever he was asked always responded “We’re ready for the NHL.” In one specific interview, with KXNT’s Heidi Harris, Arpin was asked about the Zamboni Room at the arena, he said something to the tune of “we didn’t invest that much money on zambonis to host Disney on Ice once a year.” (Not a direct quote, working on getting the audio).
Workers, are holding off painting them until June, when the NHL is expected to make a decision. -Hanna Karp, Wall Street Journal
Make no mistake, T-Mobile Arena was built with at least a bit of knowledge from the league a team would be awarded to The Creator. They aren’t lying when they say they’ll be ok without the anchor tenant, but believe you me, they’d be pissed if the NHL backs out now.