The chief financial officer for MGM Resorts International said Thursday the company has held discussions with a group looking to bring a National Hockey League team to Las Vegas, but the talks were preliminary.
The casino operator is building a $350 million sports arena and event center behind New York-New York on the Strip. The company’s partner in the arena, AEG, owns the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings.
In an interview following MGM Resorts third-quarter earnings conference call, company CFO Dan D’Arrigo said preliminary discussions had taken place with a group interested in housing an NHL team at the MGM-AEG arena, which will have 20,000 seats, along with luxury boxes and other amenities.
D’Arrigo didn’t go into details on the talks and whether the group was looking to move an existing NHL team to Las Vegas or seeking an expansion franchise.
“We would be supportive of an NHL team coming to our arena,” D’Arrigo said. “We’re highly interested and we have been in discussions with a group.”
National media outlets have reported in recent months that an NHL team would land at the new arena, which began construction earlier this year and is expected to open in 2016. The NHL has denied the reports, the most recent of which came last week in the New York Post.
MGM Resorts will have three arena-type facilities on the Strip; the new project, the MGM Grand Garden and the Mandalay Bay Events Center.
“We’re in discussion and talks over many attractions, events, boxing and other entertainment for the arenas,” D’Arrigo said.
During the quarter. MGM Resorts and AEG secured a $200 million loan to finance the building of the arena.
D’Arrigo didn’t wish to comment on a the proposed $1.4 billion arena and hotel project, that held a ceremonial ground breaking Wednesday on the north end of the Strip.
“Competition is always welcome,” D’Arrigo said. “If they are going to bring in new attractions and amenities, then we are supportive.”