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Amid an icy divorce with Glendale, the Arizona Coyotes future is still uncertain – KJZZ

The Arizona Coyotes are in their final days of a messy divorce with the city of Glendale.

After nearly two acrimonious decades in the West Valley, the hockey team’s lease was not renewed and they’ll be moving t…….

The Arizona Coyotes are in their final days of a messy divorce with the city of Glendale.

After nearly two acrimonious decades in the West Valley, the hockey team’s lease was not renewed and they’ll be moving to a new temporary home at Arizona State University starting next season. The Coyotes are seeking approval to build a new facility in Tempe and are hoping the fans will follow them as they continue their search for a permanent home. But their future is still up in the air. 

Goodbye, Glendale

It’s a Saturday afternoon in March, and the Gila River Arena is about two-thirds full. But it’s hard to tell who the fans are actually rooting for.

“Let’s go Peng-coyotes. Let’s go Coyo-penguins.”

The rally chants after “let’s go” are a mangled combination of Penguins and Coyotes, reflecting a roughly 50-50 split between allegiances and the heavy presence of fans rooting for the visiting team from Pittsburgh.

The reaction is particularly confusing when a goal is scored. Half the arena roars as the Penguins put the puck in the Coyotes net.

Phil Latzman/KJZZ

Arizona Coyotes fan Jason Jacobs at a game on March 19, 2022.

It’s a typical occurrence in Glendale, where longtime hockey fan Jason Jacobs has been coming for the past 15 years, driving all the way from Prescott to see the games.

“I gotta tell you, I love this building. I’m so happy the Coyotes are staying in Arizona, but this season is kind of special to me because I really love the feel of this area and Westgate,” said Jacobs.

Jacobs says he doesn’t understand the politics forcing the team to relocate next season.

“I wish the Coyotes were able to stay here in Glendale. I want this community to be able to thrive. I wish there could have been a better relationship so they can stay out here,” Jacobs said.

That’s not so for Melinda Latt, who comes in from the East Valley for the games with her daughter, Mikayla.

“I think the reason it didn’t work here was because when they were in downtown Phoenix, when people were just visiting, or had nothing to do on a Friday night and they were close to the area, it was a viable option,” Latt said. “But you have to be a legitimate hockey fan to get in the car and drive an hour out of your way to go,” said Latt.

‘The entire relationship is toxic’

Sports writer Craig Morgan has heard this debate for years while watching the Coyotes icy marriage …….

Source: https://kjzz.org/content/1772431/amid-icy-divorce-glendale-arizona-coyotes-future-still-uncertain

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