Arizona Hockey Team Confirms It Will Continue To Play At Mullet Arena After $2.1 Billion Arena Plan Fails At The Ballot

The Arizona Coyotes have confirmed that they will continue to play at Mullett Arena in the upcoming 2023-24 season, despite uncertainty surrounding their future in the state. The National Hockey League (NHL) team, known for their previous season at Arizona State’s 5,000-seat arena, has a deal with the university to play for two more years with an option for the 2025-26 season.

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly, as reported by ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski, stated that he doesn’t foresee a scenario where the Coyotes won’t be playing at Mullett Arena next season. This announcement follows the outcome of a public vote in Tempe, which was revealed on Tuesday night, and prevented the team from moving forward with their plans to build a new arena and entertainment district.

In a statement to season-ticket holders, Coyotes president and CEO Xavier A. Gutierrez expressed that the franchise has already begun exploring possibilities for a new permanent home in the Valley, and is engaging with local officials and sites to solidify their future location.

The proposed $2.1 billion project aimed to create a state-of-the-art 16,000-seat arena, along with a practice rink, upscale retail space, apartments, hotels, and a theater. With the collapse of this plan, it remains uncertain whether the Coyotes have an alternative strategy to remain in Arizona or if they will explore relocation to another state.

Initially, the Coyotes’ statements after learning about the vote results failed to reassure local fans about the team’s commitment to staying in Arizona. Coyotes president and CEO Xavier Gutierrez expressed disappointment in the outcome and thanked supporters and community leaders who advocated for the project. The team’s next steps will be evaluated by the team’s owners and the NHL in the next few weeks.

The vote saw approximately 30,000 voters, with a turnout of 32.6%, casting their ballots for Propositions 301, 302, and 303. As of the initial returns, which had not been updated by noon on Wednesday, Prop 301 and 302 were leading with “no” votes at 56% compared to 44% “yes” votes, while Prop 303 had “no” votes ahead at 57% to 43%.

For the arena plan to proceed, all three propositions needed to be approved. However, with their rejection, the Coyotes now face the challenge of finding a viable solution for their long-term future in Arizona.

Information for this story was found via ESPN, Arizona Sports, and the sources and companies mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to the organizations discussed. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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