Remember that insurance plan we discussed earlier in the week? Yeah, the one in which we get denied an expansion team and end up with the Carolina Hurricanes relocating to Las Vegas. Well it looks like that may have to be thrown out the window as soon as this time next week.
According to multiple radio hosts in Quebec City, an April 7th press conference scheduled out in front of the Videotron Center (the new arena in Quebec) will bring the announcement that the Canes are moving to Quebec City to become the Nordiques.
Peter Karmanos as minority partner, would settle soon in Quebec and give rebirth to the Nordiques. –Carl Dombroski, NHLNordiques.com
The reports were almost immediately denied by officials with Quebecor, the potential expansion ownership group. However, they really have no choice but do deny even if a deal is done.
The destination has not changed for us. We want the Nordiques and part of it is made through an expansion process with the NHL. We follow the League’s guidelines and we are very proud to be part of this process. -Benoit Robert, President of Quebecor Sports and Entertainments
The Quebec Journal reported there have been discussions between Canes owner Peter Karmanos and Quebecor early last week.
But, the timeline of an April 7th announcement doesn’t make a lot of sense. The Hurricanes final home game is that night and they play in Florida on the 9th as well. There’s simply no way the team would announce relocation on the night of a home game, and the chances they say anything before the regular season ends is unlikely as well.
As we always say, where there’s smoke, there’s probably fire, but I have a feeling there’s not much merit to these rumors. Not saying the Hurricanes won’t eventually move to Quebec City, but it’s not going to happen this soon.
What does it all mean for Las Vegas? Very little. Carolina was always seen as a last resort. Plus we’ve been digging around a little bit on the situation in Arizona, and it really looks like the Coyotes moving here is much more likely than the Canes. Nonetheless, expansion is still the plan until we hear otherwise.