The Arizona Coyotes received bad news Tuesday, with the report that the proposal to build a new arena for the team in Tempe, Arizona has been denied by voters.
The news hit many Coyotes fans hard, as it puts the team’s future in Arizona in jeopardy. Even Arizona forward could not help himself but share his true feelings via a single emoji on Twitter.
— Clayton Keller (@ClaytonKeller37) May 17, 2023
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman also shared his heartfelt disappointment over this latest development in the Coyotes’ quest to have a permanent home in the Valley.
“The NHL is terribly disappointed by the results of the public referenda regarding the Coyotes’ arena project in Tempe,” Bettman said in a statement released on Tuesday. “We are going to review with the Coyotes what the options might be going forward.”
There were a total of three Propositions (301, 302, and 303) that the Coyotes needed to get approval from the voters in order to get the project going. However, 56 percent of the voters voted against 301, 56 percent against 302, and 57 percent against 303.
Here are the current voting results from Arizona, with the prospective Coyotes rink proposals being defeated pic.twitter.com/2edSmQxBzO
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) May 17, 2023
The Coyotes can still continue playing at the Mullett Arena located inside the campus of Arizona State, but that’s only guaranteed until the end of the 2024-25 season. There is a mutual option for the 2025-26 season, but that’s clearly something that is not conducive as a long-term home-ice option for Arizona. For one, Mullet Arena only has a seating capacity of around 5,000. The proposed arena had a projected number of 16,000 seats.
“While we wanted a different outcome, we remain grateful to all those who volunteered their time and talent. What is next for the franchise will be evaluated by our owners and the National Hockey League over the coming weeks,” Coyotes president and CEO Xavier A. Gutierrez said via a statement following the voting..