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Bettman: Coyotes ‘Will Finalize Something’ For Arena In Coming Months

  • For the second straight season, the Coyotes will play in a 5,000-seat arena.
  • The team has still not secured its long term future in Arizona.
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Arizona Coyotes are entering their second season playing at the 5,000-seat Mullet Arena on the campus of Arizona State University — but the team and NHL are optimistic that plans for the franchise’s future home will be solidified by season’s end.

“My belief is in the next few months, they will finalize something,” NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said recently.

In August, the Coyotes signed a letter of intent to purchase a plot of land in Mesa as the possible site of a $2.1 billion sports and entertainment district featuring a 16,000-seat arena. That came after a huge defeat for the franchise in May, when a similar project was rejected by voters in Tempe.

Now, the Coyotes are tasked with determining the best land option and funding sources. 

Bettman added that his hope was to have something done by the end of the season and/or next summer. It would be several years before the Coyotes could move into a new venue, even if construction started in 2024.

Media Madness

Last week, the Coyotes finally got clarity regarding their media rights deal with Diamond Sports Group’s Bally Sports Arizona, which was supposed to run through the 2024-25 season. A bankruptcy judge granted permission to DSG to reject the deal, allowing the Coyotes to take over the rights.

Coyotes president and CEO Xavier Gutierrez told Front Office Sports the team had planned on that outcome for several weeks, although the franchise couldn’t make any agreements until Thursday’s ruling came down. The Coyotes announced a local broadcast deal with Scripps Sports to carry 81 of 82 games.

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