Why did the Arizona Coyotes seek out ASU and the East Valley?

Coyotes holding a press conference Monday to discuss a possible move                      KNXV

Coyotes holding a press conference Monday to discuss a possible move KNXV

The Coyotes announced a proposal Monday to build a 16,000-seat arena near Arizona State University's main campus by 2019, a deal that would put the team in the heart of the Phoenix area's population and financial center.

"It's a location that we think is ideal".

"Over the past year we have been exhaustive in our research regarding the most optimal location for our new home in the Valley", said Arizona Coyotes President and CEO Anthony LeBlanc.

The Coyotes said it will pay for about half of the $400 million project.

IceArizona/ASU are also expected to construct a supplemental 4,000 seat arena nearby for use by ASU's NCAA Hockey team, to replace the significantly smaller Oceanside Ice Arena.

For a long time, the Coyotes were waffling between "will they stay" and "will they go".

The Coyotes, who expect to continue playing in Glendale through the 2018-19 campaign, plan to pay for almost half of the facility in partnership with Arizona State.

The NHL franchise is working with Catellus Development Corporation, master developer for the Arizona State University Athletic Facilities District, for the 16,000-plus seat building - part of a bigger commercial development - to be built along nearby nearby Tempe Town Lake.

The Coyotes will leave Gila River Arena in Glendale, after the conclusion of the 2018-19 season.

The Coyotes' agreement with developer Catellus Development Corp. sets a June 30 deadline for creating the overall budget, design and operational plan for developing the arena.

The 'Yotes now call Gila River Arena in Glendale home, but the team's relationship with the city turned tense a few years ago. As Jeff Metcalfe of AZCentral pointed out Monday, Glendale City Council voted to terminate the Coyotes" 15-year lease agreement last summer, and the two sides since agreed on a short-term deal that gives the "Yotes a place to play while they look for a new, long-term option.

"We are thrilled to partner with Catellus on this tremendous project that will include our future new home in the East Valley", said Coyotes Majority Owner, Chairman and Governor Andrew Barroway.

Although it was touch and go for awhile, the proposed new Tempe arena should cement the team's status as the Arizona Coyotes for years to come.

Arizona had considered sites in downtown Phoenix, Scottsdale and Tempe before LeBlanc announced in June that the team had selected a then-unnamed site for its new home.

The Coyotes have the worst record in the NHL at 5-9 for a league-low 10 points.

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