Seattle’s quest for a National Hockey League team took a major step forward on Thursday when the potential franchise-to-be began its season-ticket drive.
And only a few hours later, the team was making major steps as Seattle revealed they were making history with the current ticket drive. They announced the following on their Twitter account, just a few hours after the drive's opening:
"WOW. What else can we say? We knew you were excited but the interest we're seeing is overwhelming -- literally! The sites are slow due to this huge influx of traffic, but we are still accepting deposits. Keep trying and THANK YOU -- you're making history!"
They are over 25,000 in just over an hour. According to John Shannon, it took seven minutes to get to 10000.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman has been quite optimistic about Seattle's market, which is a more traditional one than what is taking place in Las Vegas. Ultimately, it will be Seattle’s hockey fans who make the decision, but so far, it surely seems like the interest is there.
“We’re going to go through the due diligence that we need to do with ownership, the arena, with the market – the same things we did with Las Vegas. This season-ticket drive will speak for itself,” Bettman said on Sportsnet 650’s The Program on Wednesday. “If they sell out tons and tons of tickets, like Las Vegas did, that’s a market that tells you it’s going to be successful. If the season-ticket drive stalls, then that’ll tell us something else.”
“Everything I’m hearing is, not only are [Seattle’s prospective ownership group] optimistic, they’re incredibly excited at the response they’re getting. And, again, I’m not surprised because the Pacific Northwest has a great interest in hockey – great fans at all levels of the game.
“Seattle has a tradition at other levels of having hockey and, frankly, the possibility of a geographic rivalry with Vancouver is a checkmark in the right column.”