Sam Morris/Las Vegas News Bureau
Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2017 | 4:13 p.m.
Vegas Golden Knights players and coaches will head on the road before the season even begins, visiting various cities in Idaho, Montana and Utah during the next two weeks.
Coaches Gerard Gallant and Mike Kelly will be joined by players Calvin Pickard, Alex Tuch, Jake Bischoff and Nate Schmidt for the five-city road trip.
The stops will be Aug. 14 in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, Aug 15 in Whitefish, Montana, Aug. 16 in Bozeman, Montana, and Salt Lake City (Aug. 16) — all of which are in the Golden Knights authorized television distribution territory.
But notably missing from the list of stops is Las Vegas, which isn’t sitting too well with some fans on social media. Many locals would also miss out on the vast majority of Golden Knights televised games if the season started today.
As of this morning, representatives from Cox Communications said there is no update on negotiations with AT&T SportsNet, which will carry all but five of the 82 regular season Golden Knights games. Customers of DirecTV will get the games, as the provider already carries the network.
The road trip falls in line with owner Bill Foley’s vision to make the Golden Knights, “the team of the Rockies.” Foley owns a 21-acre ranch in Montana, and is the majority owner of Whitefish Mountain Resort as well as other businesses in the state.
“Las Vegas has always been a premier travel destination and our city is now emerging as a premier sports destination as well,” Golden Knights President Kerry Bubolz said. “The Vegas Golden Knights Road Trip will bring the excitement of Golden Knights hockey into several communities that are easily accessible from Las Vegas and all located within our television distribution territory through our partnership with AT&T SportsNet.”
As for player appearances in Las Vegas, Bubolz said they were coming.
“Once the season begins, our players will be very active in the Las Vegas area and participate in numerous community appearances and charitable events in our market,” Bubolz said. “This is an opportunity for our players to visit other cities that we may not be able to reach during the season. We look forward to having hockey fans of all ages get the chance to meet some of these players, coaches and executives and enjoy our great game.”