Let’s get it back to the Arizona Coyotes.
Starting next season, they will be playing in this arena:
It’s coming together! 🏡
We’re in Tempe this afternoon checking out the Sun Devils’ new multi-purpose arena where we’ll play next season. pic.twitter.com/gEZ064IZAB
— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) February 14, 2022
You’ve got to be kidding, right? An NHL team playing in that arena? It holds 5,000 people!
I thought this was a joke, but it’s not. They are actually going to play here.
Here’s some more info on what the hell is going on from ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski:
The Coyotes announced on Thursday that they’ve reached an agreement with Arizona State University to play at the Sun Devils’ new multipurpose arena beginning in the 2022-23 season. The team said it will play all its home games at the venue through the 2024-25 season, with an additional option for the 2025-26 season.
The team needed a new home. They’re in the last year of their lease at Gila River Arena, and the city of Glendale declared that the 2021-22 season will be the team’s last in the building, ending a contentious relationship.
The Coyotes targeted ASU as a temporary option that would keep the team in the Valley of the Sun as it negotiates a new arena in Tempe. Coyotes owner Alex Meruelo submitted a $1.7 billion arena and entertainment complex plan to the Tempe City Council in Sept. 2021, but it hasn’t been voted on yet.
For context here, the Reading Royals play in a 7,000 seat arena and the Lehigh Valley Phantoms play in a 8,400 seat arena. We’re talking AHL and ECHL. Bigger arenas than the Coyotes’ new digs.
This might be SLIGHTLY more palatable if it was a one-year thing, but it’s not. It’s a multi-year thing with a new arena not even approved.
Isn’t this somewhat embarrassing for the NHL? These guys have one playoff appearance in nine seasons and now they’re playing in a venue the size of the Boyertown Junior High East Planetarium. Move the Coyotes somewhere. Bring back the Nordiques or the Whalers. Give Canada another team. Are there Coyotes in Saskatoon? What about Regina?