NHL hoping to have clarity on Arizona's situation early next year; relocation still an option

Published October 6, 2023 at 1:35 PM

The Coyotes' future in Arizona is still uncertain, especially after a vote in the City of Tempe for a new arena and entertainment complex didn't go in their favour.

Tempe residents voting no to the Coyotes' plan has left the franchise looking for a new permanent home as it's not a viable option to play at Mullett Arena for more than a couple of years.

There are a few options that the franchise are exploring, including an arena and entertainment complex in Mesa, which was brought forward by Coyotes CEO Xavier Gutierrez.

During Thursday's edition of Insider Trading on TSN, Pierre LeBrun said that the National Hockey League is hoping to have clarity on the Coyotes' situation in early 2024, either January or February. He added that this needs to be done before the league considers expansion in case they need to relocate the Coyotes to a city that is interested in having an NHL franchise.

"Yeah, there's no question that this feels like a once and for all proposition for Coyotes owner Alex Meruelo to get some finality on whether he can fix the arena situation in Arizona. What Gary Bettman said Wednesday was that they hope to have some clarity in January or February and that they remain optimistic that Arizona could actually figure this out. We shall see. But as other governors told me Wednesday at the meeting, there's no question you have to figure out Arizona first in case you have to move them to one of those cities that we just talked about. Especially whether that's Houston or Salt Lake City." LeBrun said.

It's unclear where the Coyotes' plans stand at this current time, especially in terms of a potential move to Mesa, Arizona, but it feels like this could be the team's last shot at staying in the state. The Coyotes have been given plenty of chances over the years to remain in Arizona by the National Hockey League, more than they ever did for franchises such as the Atlanta Thrashers before they moved to Winnipeg in 2011.

If the Arizona Coyotes are forced to relocate, the most likely options are Houston and Salt Lake City, both of whom have arenas ready to host a professional hockey team.

Should the National Hockey League relocate the Arizona Coyotes in the near future? Share your thoughts in the poll below.

Source: Pierre LeBrun - TSN Insider Trading
October 6   |   110 answers
NHL hoping to have clarity on Arizona's situation early next year; relocation still an option

Should the Arizona Coyotes be relocated?

Yes, they've been given too many chances9182.7 %
No, keep them in Arizona1412.7 %
Not Sure10.9 %
See Results43.6 %
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