Sunday evening, during the Philadelphia Flyers and New York Islanders game, El Paso was named Hockeyville USA for 2020.
“Without the dedication and support from loyal fans in Rhino Country and around the world, this designation would not have been possible,” team officials shared Sunday evening.
“All of the staff in Rhino Country would like to thank each person who voted, posted, or share information and every individual who has supported the sport of hockey since the 1990’s when the Buzzards were El Paso’s only hockey team. Without the decades of support, winning 2020 Hockeyville would not have been possible.”
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman made the announcement that El Paso had earned the Hockeyville USA title and will now receive $150,000 for rink upgrades and host an NHL pre-season game.
In the first round of the competition, fans helped El Paso become the only rink in Texas and the only rink south of Kansas to advance to the final four. Fans from across the country voted from 5 am on Saturday and 9 am on August 30, fans voted.
More information on the NHL pre-season game will be released at a later date, but the prize money will be used to repair and insulate the rink’s roof.
Club officials add that an improved roof would make the facility better equipped to maintain ice in El Paso’s hot temperatures.