The Arizona Coyotes have called Gila River Arena home since 2003, but after next season, the hockey team will be looking for a new home.
After the City of Glendale decided to opt out of its joint lease agreement with the team at Gila River Arena, the shocking news was delivered to the Coyotes on Thursday afternoon. With 2021-2022 being the last season at Gila River Arena, team executives are scrambling to find a new spot for the Arizona Coyotes.
The Fate Of The Arizona Coyotes
Months of stalled negotiations along with “outstanding and delinquent balances owed by the Coyotes” led to the city’s decision to terminate the team. The Arizona Coyotes will need to vacate Gila River Arena by June 30, 22.
According to public records, the Arizona Coyotes owed the arena a total of $1,462,792 as of July of 2021. A chunk of the balance, $300,000, was also reported as over four months overdue.
Even though there have been rumors circulating that the team is looking to build a new facility in Tempe, The Athletic reports that Coyotes president, Xavier Gutierrez, was looking for a multi-year lease extension with Gila River Arena.
“We are hopeful that they will reconsider a move that would primarily damage the small businesses and hard-working citizens of Glendale. We remain open to restarting good-faith negotiations with the City. Most importantly, the Coyotes are one hundred percent committed to finding a long-term arena solution here in Arizona, and nothing will shake our determination to do what is right for our organization, residents of the entire Valley, and, most importantly, our fans,” stated Gutierrez.
The idea of the team leaving Arizona isn’t out of the question as of now. Cities including Houston and Quebec City have expressed interest in adding an NHL franchise to their city.
Arizona Sports Franchises And Sports Betting
This news could be why the Coyotes are the only large sports franchise in the state to not announce a sports betting partnership. With sports betting set to launch in Arizona on September 9, partnerships between sportsbooks and local sports franchises have formed.
The following partnerships have been announced:
- BetMGM & The Arizona Cardinals
- FanDuel & The Phoenix Suns
- DraftKings & the PGA’s TPC Scottsdale
- Caesars Sportsbook & The Arizona Diamondbacks
- Bally Bet & The Phoenix Mercury
- Barstool Sportsbook & NASCAR’s Phoenix Raceway
The interesting part is the Arizona Department of Gaming reports they received ten license applications from sports franchises. Sports bettors in the state will know by the end of the month which sportsbook apps will officially launch in September.