Arizona cancels land auction necessary for revival of Arizona Coyotes

Graham Montgomery
June 21, 2024  (7:16 PM)

Black alternate Arizona Coyotes jersey with the Kachina logo
Photo credit: ESPN

The Arizona Coyotes may never return to the NHL after today's announcement that the Arizona State Land Department has cancelled the land auction set for next week.

When the Coyotes were sold and relocated to Utah, the NHL left the door open to the team returning to Arizona. Not the current version of the team, but a new one just with the same branding and name.
It would effectively be an expansion team with the exact same branding as the old team. Unfortunately though, the team only has five years to build a new arena and they suffered a major setback on that front today as the land auction for their proposed site was cancelled.
BREAKING Arizona Land Department cancels June 27 auction for land sought by former owner of Arizona Coyotes.

Fan response to this news has been largely negative. It seems that there is little appetite for the league to return to Arizona, as fans would rather just see the Coyotes gone for good.
The Arizona Coyotes will never be a thing again, the NHL needs to move on and stop beating this dead horse.

That being said, there are still some diehard fans of the team in the desert, and they will surely be hoping for their team to return some day. Furthermore, the Phoenix area is now the largest urban area in the United States that does not have an NHL team.
However, Alex Meruelo has proven time and time again to be an incompetent owner and now fans are theorizing that the state does not want to sell to him out of fear that he will bungle the project.
I think this kinda just means the State of Arizona doesn't want to sell anything to the Meruelo Group 😬

The Coyotes did release an official statement today after the news of the auction cancellation went public. They insist that they have followed all the rules and requirements presented to them to win the auction.
Today, after over a year of planning and meeting every obligation required under Arizona Law, the Arizona State Land Department unilaterally cancelled the auction that was scheduled to occur on June 27th for the site that has been identified as the future home of the Arizona Coyotes. This unprecedented action by the state of Arizona seriously jeopardizes the future of NHL hockey returning to the desert.

It is not clear how this saga will end but for the time being, we will just have to assume that the Coyotes will not be returning to the desert.
Source: HouseofHockey
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Arizona cancels land auction necessary for revival of Arizona Coyotes

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