Arizona Coyotes face major delay in return to NHL

River Hawk
June 21, 2024  (6:37 PM)

Arizona Coyotes logo
Photo credit: NHL

After the franchise moved to Utah earlier this year, the Alex Meruelo Arizona Coyotes now face another major obstacle in their attempt to rejoin the NHL.

The Arizona Coyotes had an unusual run in the NHL. After two rebrands and zero historic Stanley Cup Wins, the team has now departed their state for Salt Lake City, Utah under the ownership of Ryan Smith.
"#BREAKING: The NHL has officially confirmed that the Arizona Coyotes have been sold and the team is moving to Salt Lake City, Utah."

Former team owner and governor Alex Meruelo still believed the team could make a return to Arizona, entering a lottery for enough land for a new arena. If successful, the Coyotes could be back after five years.
"The league is going to buy the Coyotes for a billion dollars, and the current owner Alex Meruelo is going to have a five year window to prove he can put together a new arena, go to the land auction, win it, get shovels in the ground... everything that he has to do to prove he can build a new arena."

Unfortunately for Arizona hockey fans, the Coyotes' new issue could mean the end of hope for the team's NHL return. The Arizona State Land Department decided to cancel the auction Alex Meruelo was expected to win, requiring a Special Use Permit. Without proper development space, the time slot for building a new arena has shrunk significantly.
"After much consideration, the Arizona State Land Department (ASLD) has determined that it is in the best interest of the Trust to cancel the auction and reorder the steps. ASLD recently confirmed that the proposed arena use will require a Special Use Permit, and as a result we are requesting that the applicant file for and receive a Special Use Permit prior to the auction. This affords the applicant & ASLD certainty that the applicant can build what it intends to build for its anchor tenant. It is not uncommon for ASLD to require applicants to secure zoning/use permits prior to auction. We understand the delay in an auction is a disappointment for our applicant and members of the public, but the change in timing is the prudent decision for the Trust. ASLD remains open to working with our applicant to bring the land forward to auction in the future if a special use permit is received."

With the auction canceled, the Coyotes are in trouble of never returning to the NHL. Hopefully, Alex Meruelo can obtain the proper permit and get an auction date. If not, Arizona hockey fans may have to find a new team to root for.
Source: Blade of Steel
Arizona Coyotes suffer major blow, team won't win auction on June 24th
21 JUIN   |   180 ANSWERS
Arizona Coyotes face major delay in return to NHL

Will Alex Meruelo be able to bring back the Arizona Coyotes?

Yes2614.4 %
No, someone else will4927.2 %
No, they're gone forever10558.3 %
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