NHL Rumors: 2024 NHL Draft, Senators, Olympics, Expansion, and the Coyotes

The NHL looking at Vegas and the Sphere for the 2024 NHL draft

TSN: Chris Johnston says the NHL has looked a lot of venues in Las Vegas to host the 2024 NHL draft. The Sphere is one of the venues they have considered.

“Probably the preeminent entertainment venue in the world now at a cost of $2.3 billion that’s just opening. And that’s one of the places I think the league would like to have the draft there ultimately in June.”

The Senators – Shane Pinto deal is not an easy one

TSN: The Ottawa Senators continue to work on a Shane Pinto deal. It’s a tough deal to get done according to Chris Johnston.

“One thing that Shane Pinto shares with Jamie Drysdale is that he is two years from arbitration eligibility and that makes it difficult to value what could be a second year in a deal, makes a player less inclined to sign a one-year contract. I think that’s partly what slowed up the process in Anaheim.”

Tuesday is when players get paid and the Senators season opener is Wednesday.

Olympic talks continue

TSN: Darren Dreger said the NHL and NHLPA want to keep working with IIHF to get NHL players back into the Olympics. Talks will continue.

“But the IIHF does have to pony up some money here in covering some of the insurance costs. What about the travel costs for the players and their families? It’s expected that those discussions at the IIHF level will continue on Friday.”

Is it “a matter of when and not if” for NHL expansion?

TSN: After Gary Bettman spoke on Wednesday about NHL expansion, it seems more like “a matter of when and not if” according to Pierre LeBrun. Bettman did say that they weren’t ready yet but said they have been talking to four cities – Atlanta, Houston, Salt Lake and Quebec City.

As for what the expansion fee might, “a lot” according to Bettman. LeBrun notes that the Seattle Kraken went for $650 million but the Ottawa Senators just sold for $950 million.

Utah Jazz owner Ryan Smith said he’s still “super interested” in an NHL team.

Bettman hopes for Coyotes clarity in the next few months

TSN: Pierre LeBrun said that some Board of Governors members said that need to get the Arizona Coyotes arena situation figured out. Gary Bettman said on Wednesday they hope to have some clarity by January or February. If they have to move the Coyotes, Houston or Salt Lake City could be options.