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NHL to Seattle 2019 News in Review

Here is a look at the timeline of NHL to Seattle news through 2019.

January 9th – NHL commissioner, Gary Bettman, visits Seattle. Among other things, Bettman confirms that Seattle will host an NHL All Star game & an NHL Entry Draft.

January 21st – Speculation starts to mount that Seattle could hire a general manager sometime in the summer (2019).

January 29th – While addressing the media at the AHL All-Star game, AHL president, David Andrews shares that he expects a new AHL franchise for Seattle for the 2021-22 season. This was would be a different approach than the expansion Vegas Golden knights took in their first year in the NHL. The Golden Knights shared the Chicago Wolves as their AHL affiliate with the St. Louis Blues in their first year.

February 25th – In an article with 425Magazine, NHL Seattle Minority Owner reveals that the name for the franchise would be coming the summer of 2019.

March 9th & 10thSeattle hosted the first ever Seattle Hockey Analytics Conference (SeaHAC), as a grass roots analytics conference for enthusiast, NHL clubs, agents and fans to come together to share their passion and knowledge for hockey analytics.

March 19th – We saw our first glimpse inside the demolition of the arena formerly known as KeyArena.

April 18th – Demolition on the Seattle Center arena is in full swing. The club provides a tour and update to the arena demolition progress.

May 2nd – The Vegas Golden Knights announce that Assistant General Manager, Kelly McCrimmon would be promoted to General Manager, squashing the rumors and speculation that he would be Seattle’s first General Manager.

May 3rd – NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly visits Seattle for a checkup on the process. Takes some time to visit with local media.

May 9th – Assistant General Manager for the Columbus Blue Jackets, Bill Zito, was confirmed to have met with NHL Seattle on the potential GM position for the club.

May 10th – In a NHL Seattle Facebook AMA, Tod Leiweke revels that a name could potentially come this fall (as in Fall 2019).

May 28thDave Tippett leaves Seattle and his Senior Advisor role to NHL Seattle for the Edmonton Oilers. Tippett served NHL Seattle as a Senior Advisor to NHL Seattle with hockey matters including but not limited to practice facility, Seattle Center Arena, and AHL location.

June 5th – SnoKing Hockey Association announces plan for new two sheet ice facility in Snoqualmie Ridge. The project is expected to be completed in Summer of 2020.

June 11th – The NHL Seattle practice facility continues through the design and permitting process.

June 26th – NHL Seattle group officially applies for AHL Expansion in Palm Springs.

June 29thNHL Seattle hires Hockey Analytics dynamo Alexandra Mandrycky.

July 18thRon Francis named the first General Manager of the Seattle NHL Franchise.

July 20th – Local hockey players participate in a 24-hour marathon game that raises $25,000 for Fred Hutch Cancer Research.

July 30th – Ron Francis states the name of the Seattle franchise will come first part of 2020.

August 23rd – While speaking in a facebook live AMA, Tod Leiweke says the name could come the first quarter of 2020. “I think it’ll be the first quarter of next year, perhaps around the All-Star Game, when there’s a reveal,”

September 3rdRicky Olczyk named Assistant General Manager for Seattle NHL franchise. As a comparable, this is a full year before Kelly McCrimmon was hired in Las Vegas in relation to the start of their inaugural season.

September 16th – NHL Seattle hosts another media tour of the Seattle Center Arena development. 

September 25thNHL Seattle announces the first pro scouts joining the club: Stu Barnes, John Goodwin, Cammi Granato, Dave Hunter, and Ulf Samuelsson.

September 30thPalm Springs officially becomes the home of the Seattle AHL affiliate.

October 16thNHL Seattle sends out email to Club Season Ticket depositors and announces club pricing.

November 19th – While attending the PrimeTime Sports Management Conference, NHL Seattle GM Ron Francis said he hopes the NHL expansion team will announce its name in the first quarter or first half of next year.

John Barr
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