The Calgary Flames announced on Tuesday that they will no longer pursue a new arena in Calgary. Flames CEO and President Ken King made the announcement during a press conference at the Scotiabank Saddledome. King said that the latest meetings that have taken place with Calgary city council have been “Spectacularly unproductive”. Talks between the two sides have, atleast for now, ended.
Flames will no longer pursue new arena in Calgary
Just one day prior to this announcement, Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi released a campaign video saying a Victoria Park arena is part of his “vision” for the East Village section of downtown Calgary. This is suggested by some to serve as a tactic by the mayor to gain votes for the upcoming civil election.
Local Calgary media reporter Eric Francis broke the news Tuesday afternoon, sending a shockwave through the Flames fanbase.
Breaking: Ken King drops bombshell, saying owners no longer going to pursue new arena in Calgary.
— Eric Francis (@EricFrancis) September 12, 2017
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman was in attendance at the press conference. Bettman said “There will be great consequences that will have to be dealt with” if Calgary doesn’t get a new facility for their NHL franchise. When asked what Calgarians can do now, Bettman replied “Make your voice heard if you think the city is moving in the wrong direction”.
King went on to say the Flames will continue to operate out of the Saddledome as long as they can. He also made it clear that the ownership group is “not shopping, not looking around” for new destinations right now.
This news happened to fall on the same day Seattle announced plans for a new, NHL capable arena. Both King and Bettman did not comment on relocation destination possibilities.
The Scotiabank Saddledome is currently the oldest building (other than Madison Square Garden) in the NHL. The Saddledome was built in 1983 primarily to replace the Stampede Corral as the home of the Flames.
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