The ongoing issues with the Flames and the city of Calgary has been well-publicized. The two sides are at odds in regards to the construction of a new arena and who should shoulder the greatest burden of the cost. The Flames have made it known that they have made offers to the city, offers they believe to be fair, and that the city has been the side unwilling to work toward a resolution. However, as The Hockey News’ Ken Campbell points out, the public relations battle that the team is waging may be all for not. Calgary mayor Naheed Nenshi, according to Campbell, is not only well-liked, but also a tough negotiator. Campbell believes that Nenshi is not like many politicians, who often cave when it comes to dealing with local sports teams. It seem that Nenshi is willing to make a stand and work toward an agreement that is more balanced for the taxpayers of Calgary. Some may see risk in Nenshi calling Flames billionaire owner Murray Edwards’ bluff, but Campbell believes that there is no way the Flames leave the city under any circumstances. The people of Calgary will inevitably end up partially funding a new arena, but with Nenshi as their negotiator, it should be on far better terms than the Flames’ current offer.
- The Arizona Coyotes issued a statement last night, updating fans on the status of the ice at Gila River Arena. The Coyotes were forced to cancel their first home preseason game on Monday night due to poor ice conditions. With only a fixed amount of time for preseason hockey, Arizona did not even have the ability to postpone their contest with the Los Angeles Kings. In an effort to make sure they didn’t miss anymore opportunities to take a look at their young and very different roster, the Coyotes worked quickly to install a new sheet of ice and have their arena back up to suitable standards. The improvement is just in time, as the San Jose Sharks come to town tomorrow.
- The Detroit Red Wings took the ice at the brand new Little Caesars Arena for the first time today, as noted by beat writer Helene St. James. The Wings played their final game at Joe Louis Arena, the historic building at 19 Steve Yzerman drive, in April after being one of the most dominant teams in all of sports during their residency from 1979 to 2017. Veterans like Henrik Zetterberg and Niklas Kronwall, who more or less grew up in “The Joe” will now have to get a feel for their new home, the massive 20,000 seat Little Caesars Arena, and it all starts with the team’s first game there, hosting the Boston Bruins tomorrow night.