Las Vegas will play host to the 2022 NHL All-Star Weekend, the league announced this week. The festivities, which include the All-Star Game, skills competitions and other festivities, will take place in the city for the first time, just five years after the city saw its first NHL puck drop with the debut of the Las Vegas Golden Knights.
“It’s very exciting to have the opportunity to host the 2022 NHL All-Star Weekend at T-Mobile Arena,” Golden Knights President Kerry Bubolz said. “This is one of the League’s premier events of the year and we are thrilled to bring fans from around the world to Las Vegas to celebrate hockey. This event will also help continue our growth of the game in Nevada and our surrounding areas.”
No All-Star weekend was held for the 2020-21 NHL season, with began in January due to delays related to the COVID pandemic, with multiple challenges to operations based on restrictions on travel, particularly related to the operation of franchises on both sides of the United States-Canada border. The 2020-21 NHL All-Star Weekend had been scheduled to take place at BB&T Center in Florida – home of the Florida Panthers – in late January. While Minnesota was named as the host for the 2022 NHL Winter Classic after its 2021 date was wiped out by the pandemic, South Florida will have to wait for its chance to host the All-Star Weekend.
Las Vegas has seen rapid success in the launch of professional hockey in the desert. The Golden Knights have made it to the playoffs in each of their first four seasons, losing in the Stanley Cup Finals in 2018 and falling in the semifinal round in both 2019 and in the COVID-shortened 2021 season. The All-Star Weekend will be the first in-season NHL event hosted in the city, and will take place at a date to be determined, somewhere near the midpoint of the 2021-22 campaign. Generally, that means late January, but the 2020-21 campaign didn’t begin until January 13, and the Stanley Cup Finals are still underway between Tampa Bay and Montreal.
Other signature NHL events for the 2021-22 season include the Winter Classic, announced for Minnesota in January, and the NHL Stadium Series, which is scheduled for February 22 at Nashville’s Nissan Stadium and will feature the Lightning taking on the host Predators. There are also plans for a Tim Hortons Heritage Classic in March, but no details have been announced for that contest.
The 2022 NHL All-Star Weekend will mark the third major sports league to host such an event in Las Vegas. The WNBA held its All-Star Game in Las Vegas in 2019 and plans to return for this year. The only other All-Star event in the city was back in 2007, when the Thomas & Mack Center hosted the NBA All-Star Game.