LAS VEGAS — One year ago, there was a secret announcement before the 2016 NHL Awards. Your correspondent and other reporters gathered in a ballroom in the Encore Resort and Casino awaiting news we already knew. After waiting a while, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, businessman and financier Bill Foley, and a giant street sign reading “NHL Hockey Blvd” emerged from a door on a right. Las Vegas had a hockey club, becoming the 31st franchise in the league.
A year later, they’ve turned that franchise into a hockey team, selecting 30 players from each of the other organizations in the NHL during a televised production of the 2017 NHL Awards.