A potential deal to build a new arena in Tempe, Arizona for the Coyotes is dead, according to a report by Anne Ryman, Mary Jo Pitzl and Jessica Boehm of The Arizona Republic. A plan involving the Coyotes and Arizona State University to build a 330-acre athletic district which would have included separate arenas for the two had been in the works since November but Arizona State has withdrawn from the negotiations.
In a statement released this evening by Arizona State, the school “has no intention of proceeding to sign a development agreement or an option to lease or any other agreement with the Coyotes.”
The Coyotes have long been looking for a resolution to their arena situation in Arizona and this is just another setback for the organization. It’s unclear whether the team has any other options in Arizona at this point.
The decision comes just days after Senator Bob Worsley introduced legislation that would have ultimately provided funding for the project without impacting the state’s general fund. He agreed to sponsor the legislation with the express purpose of ensuring the Coyotes would remain in Arizona.
Unless the Coyotes have an in-state alternative, this news will almost assuredly lead once again to rumors of relocation with Quebec City an Seattle representing possible destinations, though the latter option would not create a further imbalance among the conferences.