The Arizona Coyotes will be without a home following the upcoming NHL season.
On Thursday, August 19, the City of Glendale announced it will be terminating the team’s lease at the city-owned Gila River Arena after the 2021-22 campaign.
“With an increased focus on larger, more impactful events and uses of the city-owned arena, the city of Glendale has chosen to not renew the operating agreement for the Arizona Coyotes beyond the coming 2021-22 season,” a statement from the city read. “The City has informed the National Hockey League’s (NHL) Arizona Coyotes that the upcoming season will be the team’s last in Gila River Arena. The parties have been operating under a year-to-year agreement for several years.”
The City has informed the National Hockey League’s (NHL) Arizona Coyotes that the upcoming season will be the team’s last in Gila River Arena. The parties have been operating under a year-to-year agreement for several years.
— City of Glendale, AZ (@GlendaleAZ) August 19, 2021
The arena had been home to the Coyotes since it opened in December of 2003.
“We are thankful to the NHL and the Arizona Coyotes for being part of the Glendale community for the past 18 years,” Glendale City manager Kevin Phelps said in a statement. “The decision not to renew the operating agreement with the Coyotes was not made overnight or in a vacuum. We carefully weighed input from key stakeholders, our expert economist, our arena management firm and our city council.”
According to a report from Katie Strang of The Athletic, the team owed $1,462,792 to the arena as of July 17.
Where the Coyotes ultimately relocate remains to be seen, but cities like Quebec City, Kansas City, and Houston have been mentioned. A potential return to Phoenix could also be a possibility.