An NHL-ready arena sits in Quebec City, and yet Seattle may be awarded the NHL’s 32nd franchise the end of the year. It’s a reality, but something that doesn’t sit well with some Canadian hockey fans.
I believe that there are two reasons why this is playing out as it is.
First of all, the league wants to keep an equal amount of teams in the west as the east. Granting Seattle a franchise would put a 16th club in the western conference. It’ll make it easier for scheduling, and a Seattle franchise will be welcomed by Vancouver. The Canucks travel more than most teams in the league because of geography.
Secondly, a Seattle franchise will be appealing to American television networks. The wider the footprint, the better it is for the NHL which would, no doubt, like to grow TV revenues down south in the future.
Quebec’s day is coming because owners like receiving the money that comes with expansion franchises. However, Seattle is on deck.