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Seattle's Hope For A New Arena Rests Begins With Interest In NHL Relocation

If the NBA lockout is just another reminder to Seattle Sonics fans that the league's economic system is broken, then perhaps it's fitting that news of another arena opportunity would come on the first day of what could be a drawn out labor dispute between NBA owners and players.

But the arena might come due to building interest in the NHL.

Chris Egert of Kiro News reported that multiple "highly placed government and community sources" indicate that a new investor is exploring the possibility of a new basketball hockey arena on the Eastside with potential to house a NHL team.

Sources: Chicago Businessman Discussing NHL-NBA Arena On Eastside - News Story - KIRO Seattle
KIRO 7 sources indicate that Chicago businessman Don Levin has been in town recently meeting with various stakeholders about the new arena.

Levin is one of the owners of the Chicago Wolves pro hockey team, which plays in the American Hockey League. At one point, he was in talks to purchase the Chicago Cubs.

Chris Daniels of King5 chimed in on Twitter, adding that it's far from a done deal with at least one significant barrier.

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Nevertheless, with reports a month ago of a group contacting the NHL about the possibility of bringing hockey to Seattle, there appears to be increasing momentum for something to happen.

After years of very public dialogue about the prospect of an arena, there's definitely reason to withhold excitement about an arena being built. But with the added support of a NHL group showing interest in an arena, there might be reason for renewed, if guarded, optimism.