The Las Vegas National Hockey League expansion team could have their first general manager in place within the next few days.
Team owner, Bill Foley told the Las Vegas Review-Journal on Monday that they are down to two candidates for general manager and should have their decision by the end of the week.
Foley said, “We are hoping to have an announcement in a few days. We have got two primary candidates and we are trying to get this done. We need to get a scouting staff hired and whoever we hire as our GM will be responsible for putting the [scouting] staff together.”
Foley and his staff interviewed seven candidates at his ranch in Montana, while conducting a few other interviews VIA the telephone. The club will begin play during the 2017-2018 NHL season.
Foley said, “I can tell you the people we talked to are all well known in the hockey community and are well respected. They are all very smart and they have done different things for different teams. Some are strong on the [salary] cap. some are strong when it comes to assessing talent. But they all have strong backgrounds.”
Florida Panthers President, Dale Tallon was not contacted, but he told the Las Vegas Review-Journal, “I know he [Foley] asked my owner [Vincent Viola] for permission and he was given it. They are both West Point guys. But I never heard from Mr. Foley.”
Foley also added that there is progress being made on the team nickname and logo. The team, NHL and Adidas have been conducting ongoing discussions regarding the matter. According to Foley, the target date for a team name and logo is early October.
Foley said, “We have got two or three really good names that we are seriously considering. The Adidas people are very talented when it comes to design and they have been great. Same with the NHL. They have been extremely helpful.”
He added, “Our biggest problem is trademarks. Some of the names have trademarks and you have to go to those people and see what they have and we are working through that.”
The new team is almost sold out in terms of season tickets. The T-Mobile Arena, which will be their home venue, has a seating capacity for hockey of 17,500. The team has sold almost 15,300 season tickets to date.
In regards to season tickets, Foley said, “We are pretty close to being at capacity. We need to set some seats aside for individual game sales. We have to have tickets for the visiting team and we need to have about 500 seats set aside for our staff.”