Golden Knights

Las Vegas Golden Knights building a hockey tradition

The Washington Post profiled the rise of Las Vegas’ newest sports team, the NHL expansion Golden Knights.

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With anticipation building for their season opener on October 6, the Knights sold 14,000 season tickets. This number exceeded the league’s initial target of 10,000.

“Sports teams give cities identities. It seems the residents of the city want to be known for more than the Strip.” — George McPhee, Golden Knights GM

Even with the impending move of the NFL’s Oakland Raiders to Las Vegas, the Knights are trying to transform the gambling mecca into a hockey town. Despite 42 million visitors each year to the desert city, the team focused on drawing local residents to fill T-Mobile Arena.

“We were selling the dream to people and painting a picture. ‘How cool would it be to have a team in town to call your own?’ ” — Todd Pollock, Golden Knights VP of ticketing and suites.

A recent marketing outreach program attempted to generate interest with free stick giveaways and events called “Hockey Is For Everyone.” The Knights are also expanding their reach to other locales outside Las Vegas, such as Green Valley, Spring Valley and Henderson.

The NHL’s newest entry is determined to make hockey another option in a city known for its gambling and entertainment diversions.

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John Zielonka

John Zielonka has covered the Seattle Sounders FC, Seattle Seahawks and University of Washington men's basketball and football. He's written for Yahoo! Sports, 710 ESPN Seattle, Goal.com and is a member of the North American Soccer Reporters.
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