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Las Vegas Wranglers Need To Find A New Home

from Fox5 Las Vegas,

After calling the Orleans Arena home since the team's inception in 2003, the Las Vegas Wranglers are scrambling to secure a new venue for next season.

"The solution is not going to be simple," said Wranglers president Billy Johnson. "The timing of this has every possible place booked up."

In a meeting with Boyd Gaming, owners of the Orleans Arena, on Dec. 6, Johnson was told the team's lease with the arena would not be extended past the 2013-14 season.

"In that meeting, we were told it was 100-percent sure we would not be back," said Johnson.

Johnson asked for a one-year extension on the team's lease for time to search for a new sheet of ice.

"We were told that's not going to happen," said Johnson.


Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, Minor League, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: las+vegas+wranglers



There has been rumors of an NHL Team in Vegas, but the Orleans arena only holds 9,500 that seems far to small for an NHL Team. 

Posted by wingsnut25 on 01/04/14 at 09:17 AM ET

SYF's avatar

There has been rumors of an NHL Team in Vegas, but the Orleans arena only holds 9,500 that seems far to small for an NHL Team.

Posted by wingsnut25 from Cheboygan, MI on 01/04/14 at 09:17 AM ET

Smaller.  Try 7,779.  This is crushing the fanbase that had grown up with the team.

Optional arenas.  Barring a Hail Mary, last-minute renewal of the lease through at least the end of this next season, the Thomas and Mack Arena (treeball capacity: 18,000+) seems a likely candidate.  The MGM Grand Garden Arena (holders of the preseason Frozen Fury games bet. LAK and COL) is also a possibility.

In the northwest and far, far away (in Vegas terms) from the fanbase that helped cheered on the team is the Santa Fe Station Ice Arena, but that’s the team’s practice facility.

They need 2,500 seats to be viable in Vegas.  It’s a temporary measure, yes, to secure a larger facility, but it’s not looking good.  There are fans who are boycotting all Boyd Gaming Properties to make Boyd relent on the lease agreement.

Boyd Gaming is a darling on Wall Street for their gaming business acuity (read:  fantastic bottom line - like Wall Street isn’t already impressed with anything else but the bottom line).  Like most other companies, the sport isn’t helping their ledger books.  In the meantime, the fans get fuched over yet again.

Let this be a loud and clear message to the NHL about venturing into yet another non-traditional, desert location for a franchise to be admitted to the NHL.

Posted by SYF from Twerkin' with Anastasia Ashley on 01/04/14 at 11:54 AM ET

Primis's avatar

Sad, not entirely surprising. 

SYF, wasn’t Thomas & Mack where the Thunder played?

Posted by Primis on 01/04/14 at 04:23 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Yes, the Thunder did play at the Thomas & Mack.

There is a rising support from former Wranglers players from overseas as well.  One fan my brother spoke to is quite close to several of them and they’re just as livid that Boyd wouldn’t allow them, at the very least, to finish the season.

Posted by SYF from Twerkin' with Anastasia Ashley on 01/04/14 at 05:24 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Team President and CEO, Billy Johnson, has been aggressive in his pursuit of the real happenings between the Gary Jacobs, the owner of the Wranglers, and Boyd Gaming.


Posted by SYF from Twerkin' with Anastasia Ashley on 01/05/14 at 07:54 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Billy Johnson, expounding on the situation.


“We’re looking for a transitional situation, and we would like to have those conversations right now in concert with a permanent solution and work in concert with one entity,” he said. “We know that is not always possible, but it might be a temporary facility where we can get 2,500 or 2,600 seats in. We just want to reset the clock for Jan. 21.”

Johnson is ready for a shift change, too, if that temporary strategy doesn’t fall into place in time for the Jan. 20 deadline.

“Scenario 2 for next season is we combine two, three facilities, and we play 10 games in one place and 12 in another place. We have a lot of people who have stepped up and said they are willing to do a situation like that,” said Johnson, who has looked into availability at the Thomas & Mack Center and MGM Grand Garden Arena as a permanent home for the Wranglers.

Then Johnson, a master promoter, added, “We promise to be more out of the box than Dick Cheney Hunting Vest Night to solve this problem.”

There is a conviction in this town to make Las Vegas a permanent home for the Wranglers.  And it’s starting at the grass roots the same way when it first got started.

Posted by SYF from Twerkin' with Anastasia Ashley on 01/06/14 at 05:04 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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