SPORTS

How an NHL team helps Utah for the 2034 Winter Olympics

Apr 19, 2024, 9:16 AM

NHL announcement...

The Delta Center announces NHL coming to Utah. (Adam Small, KSL NewsRadio)

(Adam Small, KSL NewsRadio)

SALT LAKE CITY— Utah is officially home to a National Hockey League franchise and two of the big four North American sports for the very first time.

Join the discussion at 9:35!

 

All the while, Utah is the preferred candidate to host the 2034 Winter Olympics.

Having professional hockey in town seems fitting with Utah’s Olympic legacy, but how does it help?

Fraser Bullock, president and CEO of the Salt Lake City-Utah Committee for the Games, told KSL NewsRadio his thoughts on having an NHL team in Utah.

“It’s fantastic, it’s a generation opportunity for all of Utah,” Bullock said.

Bullock said an NHL team helps Utah’s Olympic plans in two ways.

First, the Delta Center will need more unobstructed seats to accommodate hockey fans. Bullock said a few thousand new seats translates into millions of dollars more in ticket sales.

Additionally, there’s a chance downtown Salt Lake City gets a new arena for the Jazz and the new hockey team, with big support coming from the state legislature.

Bullock said that new arena could enhance the hosting experience, but regardless, they already have plenty of events scheduled at the Delta Center, the Maverick Center and Peaks Ice Arena in 2034.

Second, Bullock said some NHL players don’t participate in the Olympics. He believes having an NHL franchise in Salt Lake makes it more likely the league’s players will want to participate.

What happens next with our NHL team?

The owners of Utah’s new NHL team, Ryan and Ashley Smith are set to speak at a news conference Friday at 5 p.m. And, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman will speak as well. 

KSL will have live coverage of the event and the latest developments on the NHL coming to Utah.

The new team is set to play the 2024/2025 season in the Delta Center.

According to the Deseret News, the International Olympic Committee is expected to take a final vote on Salt Lake City hosting the 2034 games on July 24.

If they vote in favor, Salt Lake City will officially be chosen as the host of the 2034 Winter Olympics.

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How an NHL team helps Utah for the 2034 Winter Olympics