NHL deals with uncertain situations on eve of Seattle vote

December 03, 2018 - 6:37 pm

SEA ISLAND, Ga. (AP) — The NHL is dealing with some uncertain situations as it prepares to finalize expansion to Seattle.

The Ottawa Senators' downtown arena project is in danger of falling apart, and Arizona Coyotes owner Andrew Barroway is looking for a partner as he tries to secure a long-term home in the desert. Meanwhile, the league would like to begin making plans for a 2020 World Cup of Hockey but has no guarantee of labor peace that would allow such a tournament to take place.

Commissioner Gary Bettman updated the Board of Governors on those topics Monday on the eve of the vote that's expected to award Seattle the league's 32nd franchise. The team would begin play in the 2021-22 season, a year after original plans because arena renovations aren't scheduled to be finished until the fall of 2020.

Bettman says the salary cap is projected to go up to roughly $83 million next season, up from the current $79.5 million limit. That's a sign revenues are continuing to rise after the success of the expansion Vegas Golden Knights.

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Follow AP Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SWhyno

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