Sport Gretzky: Hockey in Vegas 'great for the sport'

20:36  12 august  2017
20:36  12 august  2017 Source:   thescore.com

Report: Schmidt, Golden Knights heading to arbitration

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Wayne Gretzky sees a bright future for the Vegas Golden Knights. In a Wednesday interview with "NHL Tonight," the league's all-time leading scorer spoke highly of hockey 's newest franchise, which will begin play this season. "It's wonderful," Gretzky said. "It's great for the sport

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  Gretzky: Hockey in Vegas 'great for the sport' © Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Wayne Gretzky sees a bright future for the Vegas Golden Knights.

In a Wednesday interview with NHL Tonight, the league's all-time leading scorer spoke highly of hockey's newest franchise, which will begin play this season.

"It's wonderful," Gretzky said. "It's great for the sport, and it's just going to grow and get bigger and better."

Led by owner Bill Foley, general manager George McPhee, and coach Gerard Gallant, the Golden Knights expect to be an exciting addition for the NHL, featuring key expansion picks like James Neal, Jonathan Marchessault, and three-time Stanley Cup winner Marc-Andre Fleury.

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Wayne Gretzky Fantasy Camp. For 7 days every spring, diehard hockey fans from around the world gather in Las Vegas for the chance to play with a collection of NHL legends. Enjoy great food and friendly service at the upscale dining room, sports bar, and rooftop patio.

Here was hockey ’s greatest resource, the greatest player on the sports ’ greatest team, going to play for the Kings, a franchise that had rendered game was a Gretzky -led affair, as 99’s Kings defeated the Rangers 5-2 in a preseason exhibition held in the parking lot of Caesars Palace in Las Vegas .

That group will be expected to not only deliver a fun on-ice product, but to build up hockey in the community and with the Golden Knights' budding fan base.

Gretzky can certainly relate, and it wasn't by mistake his talk with NHL Tonight was held Wednesday, 29 years to the day he was shipped from Edmonton to Los Angeles, paving the way for hockey in the Sun Belt.

The Kings were the first entry into the Golden State in 1967 - alongside the now-defunct California Seals - but it was Gretzky's acquisition that put hockey in the Hollywood spotlight.

"I think (for) my first exhibition game, we had 9,000 people in the stadium, and I thought, 'Oh my goodness, what have I gotten myself into?'" Gretzky said. "But thankfully, the whole organization understood that it was going to be a process. And we were all a big part of that.

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This was hockey in Los Angeles before Wayne Gretzky . Photo by USA TODAY Sports . But then, The Great One shook the local hockey landscape in 1988 after a stunning blockbuster trade sent him from Edmonton to Hollywood.

Arguably hockey 's greatest player, Wayne Gretzky played for the Edmonton Oilers, Los Angeles Kings, St. Louis Blues and the New York Rangers during his long career. Nicknamed The Great One, Gretzky captivated Canadian sports fans as few sports stars ever had.

"We weren't just a hockey team. We had to do extra things. We had to get out into the community. We had to really put our foot behind youth hockey and really do extra work, and the players really enjoyed it. They really wanted to make hockey part of the culture of California."

Through expansion and relocation, the NHL has since added five more franchises in the American Southwest, covering San Jose, Anaheim, Phoenix, Dallas, and now Las Vegas.

And while Gretzky hopes things go smoothly for the Golden Knights, games against his Oilers, where he serves as partner and vice chair, could be a different story.

"Now that I'm back in that division with Edmonton, I hope (the Golden Knights) don't get too good," Gretzky quipped. "I do pull for people who are good people, and it is a good organization."

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The Vegas Golden Knights shouldn't aim to win in their 1st NHL season

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Gretzky 's love for the game is obvious even to those who know nothing of hockey . Warhol added, "I think it's great when a sports star can look like a movie star." "The big thing with me is that I play emotionally," says Gretzky .

Wayne Gretzky : Hockey My Way Video (Filmed at the Wayne Gretzky Sports Centre in Brantford, Ontario in 1986). 6:26. The Great one. So may records to hard to put all his highlights into one Video but here are a few. Ultimate Gretzky [2003]. 1:59:50.

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