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Coyotes Edge Closer To Staying In Phoenix, Perhaps

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As reported, the Phoenix Coyotes are one step closer to

  • finding a new owner, Ice Edge Holdings
  • re-negotiating their lease with the City of Glendale that will leave tax payers taking a hair cut
  • becoming the Arizona Coyotes in payment to said Glendale residents and
  • staying in Phoenix Glendale for 25 years to come.

That wasn't a multiple choice. That was a list of all the things that will be happening if IEH can deliver. The problem is, they've shown countless times that they don't have the financial muscle to pull this deal off or they would have pulled this deal off months ago.

For the loyal and embattled 'Yotes fans, this is the final straw of hope they are grasping at. And who can blame them for clinging to that straw with a white-knuckled death grip?

For those of us not so close to the situation and not nearly as emotionally invested in the survival of hockey in the desert, it is hard not to view this all with a highly cynical eye. Even the national types who are rooting for the Coyotes are skeptical:

via Greg Wyshynski, Yahoo! Sports Puck Daddy blog

Now all Ice Edge has to do is finalize those terms in often-contentious negotiations; avoid any legal blowback from critics of public money being used to save the franchise; secure funding in an economy that's one market correction away from lines for government rations; and then purchasing the team from Gary Bettman.

Yep, that's it.

That this has lingered as long as it has is like a pillow in the face of the franchise's playoff-season momentum. And that's a shame.

Sure, I would like to see the Coyotes stay in Phoenix Glendale. It's a good thing for us to be a "Four-Sport Town," but at this point, it is pretty clear that the local support isn't strong and now we will wait a few more weeks to find out if IEH has the financial juice to pull this off.

Like Wyshynski says, this entire thing is just one giant pie to the face. An embarrassment of Montreal Expos proportions and it is time for it to end.