Tempe Wants The NHL’s Arizona Coyotes To Operate Business In The City

The RFP seems as if it was written by the Coyotes ownership group.

In the world of the stadium game, sometimes it is really easy to pick out what government officials and sports owners want. The case of the National Hockey League’s New York Islanders and the team’s soon to be opened arena at the Belmont racetrack site on the New York City-Nassau County border is a textbook example of that. The franchise owners and the state wanted to build an arena in 2017. A request for proposals to develop that parcel of land issued by New York State officials seemed to be tailored made for the Islanders ownership. It appears elected officials in Tempe, Arizona are doing the same thing for the Arizona NHL franchise. The city has put out a request for proposals to develop a parcel within the city and when you look at the requirements, it seems written to make sure the hockey team’s ownership is going to win the right to develop the land.

Tempe officials want a professional sports stadium or arena and a practice facility. They want the team owner to create a stadium or arena village that would include 1,000 residential units, 200,000 square feet of retail space, and a large plaza with amenities. Name recognition for Tempe and an opportunity for Tempe public service announcements. Meaning Tempe will be mentioned on ESPN in game highlights. In the Phoenix area, the National Basketball Association’s Suns’ building has been renovated. The National Football League Cardinals’ stadium is still Super Bowl worthy. Major League Baseball’s Diamondbacks ownership seem to be interested in staying in Phoenix which leaves the hockey team ownership as the group Tempe wants in the parcel of land available for development. The deadline for a professional sports franchise or partner to submit a proposal to the city is August 19th. The RFP fits the hockey team’s needs.

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Arizona Coyotes goaltender Antti Raanta, left, makes a save on a shot by Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Nikita Kucherov (86) during the first period of an NHL hockey game Saturday, Feb. 22, 2020, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)