Report: Gretzky joins group pushing for NHL to Seattle
By Brent Stecker
Seattle’s hopes for an NHL team have apparently received a huge boost in the form the greatest player in league history.
NHL legend Wayne Gretzky has joined a group of investors that is looking to bring an NHL franchise to Seattle, according to a New York Post report Friday.
It’s unknown whether Gretzky has joined with one of two existing groups interested in bringing the NHL to the city or if he is part of a completely different group.
Gretzky holds 60 NHL records from his playing days and has been involved in several front-office capacities since his retirement in 1999. He was a minority owner of the Phoenix Coyotes during the 2000s and was the team’s head coach from 2005 through 2009. He also partnered with a group that attempted to buy the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2011.
Despite all of the interest surrounding NHL expansion to Seattle, league commissioner Gary Bettman told reporters in April that expansion to the city is not a possibility in the foreseeable future, citing the lack of a viable arena – the same sticking point that has kept the NBA out of Seattle since the Sonics’ departure to Oklahoma City in 2008.