It looks like the Arizona Coyotes will be remaining in Glendale, Arizona for, at least, a little bit longer. In a news release on the city of Glendale’s website, it was announced that a resolution has been reached in the legal battle between the organization and the city council.
The Glendale City Council will vote on the changes to the arena management agreement on Friday, July 24.
“This revised agreement represents a positive outcome for both the city and the Coyotes, said Glendale Acting City Manager, Dick Bowers, in a press release. It also allows us to move forward in a way that keeps an important economic driver in our community. That’s important for business and it’s important to our citizens.”
Back in June, the city council voted to nullify it’s arena management agreement with the Coyotes that would pay the team $15 million per year. Because of profit loss, the city felt that it just wasn’t a fair agreement for both parties. The Coyotes threatened legal retaliation, but it seems that things have been settled before the situation became even messier than it already was.
“We have come up with a resolution that works for both sides and is best for the team, our fans, the city and most importantly the taxpayers,” said Coyotes Co-Owner, President and CEO Anthony LeBlanc in the release. “Neither side benefits from a long, drawn out legal battle. What’s important is putting this dispute behind us and focusing on growing the Coyotes business and in turn, further growing revenues for the entire Westgate Entertainment District. This decision will bring much-needed certainty to our fans and sponsors about our near-term future and an end to the uncertainty brought about through this legal action.
“We know that hockey works in the Valley and we are committed to Arizona for the long-term. We thank Coyotes fans and sponsors for their incredible support throughout this process. They have proven that they are among the most loyal and ardent in the NHL.”
According to Fox Sports Arizona, the new deal is a lease for two years.
Per terms of the deal, the Coyotes will collect all hockey-related revenue streams that previously went to the City of Glendale, including a portion of naming rights, ticket surcharges and parking revenue, while the city will pay $6.5 million a year to the Coyotes to manage the arena. The out-clause that was part of the original 15-year, $225 million agreement has been removed.
With the deal only being for two years, at least, it opens up the possibility of uncertainty come 2017. However, it could just be a way for the team to stay at the arena for now before a new arena is built in either Phoenix or Scottsdale. All that is known is that hockey in the desert is here to stay…for now.
Michael is a former Managing Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s covered the Buffalo Sabres, along with the NHL in general, for various outlets since 2009. His work has been featured on outlets such as Yahoo, Sports Illustrated and Fox Sports.