TORONTO -- NHL expansion is likely coming in the near future, though the league hasnt committed to any official plan just yet. Cheap Nike Shoes China . For more than a year, commissioner Gary Bettman has said the NHL is listening when approached by cities interested in acquiring a team even though theres no formal expansion process underway. Amid reports this week indicating solid plans are in place, deputy commissioner Bill Daly said theres "nothing new to report on this subject." "Nothing new has happened," Daly said Wednesday in an email. Status quo doesnt necessarily mean the NHL wont eventually expand to Las Vegas, as the Vancouver Province reported Tuesday was a "done deal." And it doesnt necessarily discount the possibility of adding four teams by 2017, one each in Las Vegas, Seattle and Quebec City and a second in Toronto, as SportsBusinessNews.com reported via Twitter. Getting to 32 teams sooner rather than later would make sense for a league that moved to unbalanced conferences with 16 teams in the East and 14 in the West beginning last season. Las Vegas and Seattle fit geographically. But the NHL has several hurdles to overcome before awarding franchises, including answering arena and ownership questions. MGM and AEG are in the process of building a 20,000-seat facility in Las Vegas that could be ready by the spring of 2017, and either UNLVs Thomas & Mack Center or Orleans Arena could be short-term options. But its still unclear who would own a team in Las Vegas, let alone what could happen to sportsbooks if the NHL is the first major North American professional league to move in there. Seattle, with its vocal and passionate fanbase, has a less-than-ideal arrangement in the short-term with Key Arena. Getting a new building would be crucial to the NHL going to the Pacific Northwest. Chris Hansen, who tried to buy the NBAs Sacramento Kings to move them to Seattle, and Don Levin, owner of the AHLs Chicago Wolves, could head up an ownership group there. Communications giant Quebecor would love to resurrect the Quebec City Nordiques, and Quebecor Arena could be done by the fall of 2015. The Canadian dollar is much stronger than it was in the mid-1990s when the Nordiques moved to Denver, and fans have long been clamouring for the return of the NHL. But Bettman said at the Stanley Cup final in June that he wasnt sure how the NHL would deal with putting another team in the Eastern Conference. The Detroit Red Wings and Columbus Blue Jackets were just moved from the West to the East for the 2013-14 season. Quebecor did not return a call seeking comment Wednesday. Former prime minister Brian Mulroney is also a key player in Quebec Citys efforts to get a team back. His assistant said Wednesday he would not comment on the reports. If the NHL did choose to cash in on what SportsBusinessNews.com reported would be roughly US$1.4 billion in expansion fees by expanding to 34 teams by the centennial season of 2017-18, a second team in Toronto could play in the Western Conference. The size of the Toronto market has long made it an interesting possibility, whether the expansion team shares Air Canada Centre with the Maple Leafs or has its own arena. Outgoing MLSE president and CEO Tim Leiweke cast doubt on the report based on his interaction with Bettman on Wednesday morning. "The commissioner and I had other business this morning, so we talked for a while and this came up, and I asked him, Did I miss a meeting? And he laughed and said, Nope," Leiweke said in an interview on Sportsnet 590 The Fan. "This isnt on the agenda right now." Officially, expansion is not on the agenda . But that doesnt stop the speculation. "We listen when people say, Wed like to come visit you and tell you why were interested and where were interested," Bettman said in June. Plenty of cities are interested, including Portland, Hamilton and Kansas City. But even with a new, lucrative Canadian TV deal and growing revenues, the NHL doesnt have to rush into anything. Expansion is tempting because fees dont count toward hockey-related revenue, which gets split between owners and players. Any expansion fee, which could run in the neighbourhood of $300 million or more, depending on the market, would be money the owners dont have to share. Getting to 32 teams -- 16 in the East and 16 in the West -- makes for better playoff math and easier scheduling and would also tie the NHL with the NFL as the leagues with the most teams. Going to 34 would surpass North Americas most popular professional sports league. Any kind of expansion requires approval from the board of governors. The NHL hasnt expanded since 2000, when the Columbus Blue Jackets and Minnesota Wild joined the league. With the state of business being pretty good, the league could look to change that in the coming years. "I think if, in fact, we get to a point where theres enough interest in enough places that it warrants consideration, then the board of governors may well invoke a formal expansion process and well look at everything," Bettman said in June. Clearance Air Max 97 Online . -- Andrew Wiggins is from Canada, Wayne Selden from Massachusetts and Joel Embiid from the African nation of Cameroon. Cheap Air Max 97 From China . Omar Rahou made the discriminatory gesture several times while celebrating scoring a goal against Romania at Antwerp in January, UEFA said. The sanction was double the five-match ban Nicolas Anelka received from an English Football Association independent tribunal last week for the same act. http://www.airmax97discount.com/ . Ferrer was unable to find his rhythm in losing 6-4, 6-2 to Teymuraz Gabashvili in his opening match while Nadal struggled past fellow Spanish player Albert Ramos 7-6 (2), 6-4. Nadal eventually overcame his 103rd-ranked opponent to reach the third round, rebounding from a surprise loss to Ferrer in the Monte Carlo Masters quarterfinals.(SportsNetwork.com) - The New York Islanders have lost ground in the NHL playoff race during a five-game slide and the club may have more bad news coming down the pike. But first, the struggling club hopes to avoid a sixth consecutive setback on Tuesday when it visits the Washington Capitals at Verizon Center. Watch the Islanders vs. Capitals live tonight on TSN2 at 7:30pm et/4:30pm pt. In addition to posting an 0-4-1 record during its current slide, the Isles are also having difficulty convincing winger Thomas Vanek to stay with the club and New York may wind up trading the Austrian winger. According to a report Monday in Newsday, Vanek, who is set to become an unrestricted free agent in July, has turned down a "substantial contract offer" from the Isles. The report also says New York general manager Garth Snow is fielding offers from teams looking to acquire the 30-year-old forward. Vanek was acquired from Buffalo in a trade on Oct. 27 and he has 15 goals and 38 points in 41 games with the Islanders after becoming part of a formidable top line with John Tavares and Kyle Okposo. If Vanek is dealt by the Isles, it will turn out to be a costly rental for the club. New York sent winger Matt Moulson to the Sabres along with a first-round pick in this summers draft as well as a second-rounder in 2015 to land Vanek. The NHL trade deadline for this season is March 5. The Islanders went 10-3-0 from Dec. 29-Jan. 21 before losing five in a row. The clubs last two losses came against the rival New York Rangers, who posted a 2-1 regulation win over the Isles in last Wednesdays outdoor game at Yankee Stadium before notching a 4-1 home win Friday night at Madison Square Garden. Derick Brassard and Brad Richards scored less than three minutes apart in the third period to support a strong effort from Henrik Lundqvist in the Rangers win over the Isles at MSG. Okposo had the lone score for the struggling Islanders, while Evgeni Nabokov stopped 33-of-36 chances in defeat. "We just looked like we ran out of gas," Tavares said. "We just didnt seem to have that extra gear when we needed it." With 50 points, the Isles are currently 13th out of 15 teams in the Eastern Conference and 12 points out of a playoff spot. Including tonights tilt, New York has three games left before the NHL breaks for the Winter Olympics. Authentic Air Max 97 Sale. After visiting Washington on Tuesday, the Isles will host Calgary and Colorado on Thursday and Saturday, respectively. After losing seven in a row from Jan. 12-24, Washington has recorded three wins over its last five games and is 3-1-1 during that stretch. The Capitals split a home-and-home series with Detroit over the weekend, losing Fridays road portion against the Red Wings 4-3 in a shootout before taking Sundays wild 6-5 overtime decision at the Verizon Center. Alex Ovechkin scored a power-play goal 2:37 into overtime to lift the Capitals to Sundays entertaining matinee battle in D.C. Red Wings defenseman Brendan Smith was called for tripping at the 1:26 mark of the extra session. The Capitals moved the puck around and John Carlson fed Ovechkin for a one-timer from the left circle. Ovechkin has scored seven times over his last nine games and he is leading the NHL with 39 goals. His next goal will give Ovechkin 40 or more markers in a season for the sixth time in his career and for the first time since he posted 50 in 2009-10. Joel Ward registered two goals and one assist on Sunday and Jason Chimera added a goal and two helpers for the Capitals, who overcame blowing a trio of two-goal leads to win for the third time in their last 12 games. "We came out great and they never gave up; they are a really good hockey team," said Washington head coach Adam Oates. Michal Neuvirth picked up the win despite surrendering five goals on 30 shots. The Capitals expect to be without defenseman Mike Green for a third straight game after he suffered a concussion last week against Columbus. Green tried to practice on Monday, but he left for the dressing room after 10 minutes. Washington forwards Mikhail Grabovski (sprained left ankle), Brooks Laich (groin), Eric Fehr (lower body) and Aaron Volpatti (upper body) are also questionable for tonights contest. The Caps, who are three points out of a playoff spot in the East, are 2-0 against the Islanders this season and have won three straight and five of the past seven games in this series. Washington is 8-2-1 in the past 11 encounters in D.C. ' ' '