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Glendale wants its $20 million back

Apr 4, 2012, 4:40 PM EDT

Elaine Scruggs

Glendale’s outgoing mayor, Elaine Scruggs, blasted the NHL Tuesday for leading the city to a “terrible point.”

Scruggs is upset the league-owned Phoenix Coyotes still don’t have a new owner that will either keep the team at Jobing.com Arena or move it away. And with a $25 million payment due to the league on May 2 and the city facing a significant budget deficit, she wants some action.

Because, you know, Glendale could really use that money.

The city’s already put $20 million of the $25 million payment in escrow. However, according to the Globe and Mail, Scruggs indicated it doesn’t have the additional $5 million.

In fact, the mayor wants the entire $20 million back. She says the league led Glendale to believe a new owner would be found long before now, thus the money would already be back in city coffers and never have to be paid anyway.

“It’s [the NHL’s] problem, they misled us and they can’t do this to our city,” Scruggs said, adding later, “They have been in control of this process for the entire time. They have led us to this terrible point we’re at today.”

So, given the above, should we put the unofficial deadline to work out a solution at May 2?

Or maybe it should be May 3. That way the NHL gets to collect its $25 million from Glendale, and…it’s off to Quebec City!

That would be really mean.

  1. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Apr 4, 2012 at 4:49 PM

    She has every right to be pissed. This whole situation is a joke. The league is holding out for someone to buy the team and keep it in a market that won’t allow that person to make a profit. Nobody in their right mind will do that. Just sell the team and let it go wherever the new owner wants because that’s inevitably what’s going to happen.

    • scrouch - Apr 7, 2012 at 9:12 AM

      She doesn’t have any right to be pissed at all. The NHL isn’t just charging them money for having the team there. The only reason Glendale is paying anything is because they agreed to do it to try and keep the team there, which is why it’s impossible to sell. NHL could have sold the team years ago if it was to be relocated but Glendale put up cash the past two years so that the NHL would try to find a buyer who would keep the team there. They didn’t actually need to pay anything but chose to. It they wouldn’t have put up the cash the league would have just sold the team and moved them to Winnipeg and Glendale wouldn’t have been on the hook for any cash. They’ve been given the same option the past to years. Pay $25M to cover losses and we’ll try to keep the team here. Or don’t pay anything and we’ll sell to a buyer who will relocate it. Entirely Glendale’s choice to pay commit the money. The whole reason the situation is such a joke is because the league’s spent years longer than needed to find a buyer because Glendale keeps giving them money to find one who will keep the team where it is.

  2. bcisleman - Apr 4, 2012 at 5:06 PM

    Don’t know what the terms of Glendale’s deal with the NHL were, but the NHL should return the money if there is no buyer willing to keep the team there and it moves.

    • rainyday56 - Apr 4, 2012 at 6:27 PM

      Ya, and give Gretz the money they owe him while they’re at it (which’ll never happen ’cause it goes against league policy of putting the screws to the alpha dog in order to keep the rest of the villagers in line.)

  3. sjshark714 - Apr 4, 2012 at 6:23 PM

    Doesn’t really sound like she gives a damn whether or not the ‘yotes stay in Glendale, she just wants her money. Pretty lame since those players are about to reach the playoffs for the 3rd time in a row, with little fan support. How could you not want to watch Ray Whitney defy the laws of age?

  4. pavelfitzgerald - Apr 4, 2012 at 6:52 PM

    What a great idea it was to move them to Phoenix from Winnipeg!! It’s amazing how much effort the NHL has exerted to keep the team in Phoenix. If they had exerted 1/10 of that effort in Winnipeg 16 years ago the Jets would have never left in the firs place. I also don’ want to hear how the Coyotes would make money if they had an arena in Phoenx & not Mesa – theydid that the first 7 years & they still lost money every year. What a joke !!

    • AlohaMrHand - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:07 PM

      Especially since they just allowed the Thrashers to leave Atlanta a much bigger market than Phoenix for Winnipeg.Why was that ok but there is this insistence on keeping a team in Phoenix?

      • nuckss - Apr 5, 2012 at 4:40 PM

        Atlanta moved because the previous owner embarrassed the league by doing a tv interview during an NBA game during which he pleaded for anyone who knows someone who wants an NHL team to get in touch with him so he could unload that ungodly white elephant.

  5. claysbar - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:11 PM

    I happen to own a bag o’ beans… for U, I’d sell a few…they might be magic, they might be chilli, but never ever ever blame anyone other than yourself for making a huge bad decision. Because if you did, you might just be an idiot

  6. eastcoastcynic - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:43 PM

    Jason, It could be Seattle rather than Quebec while the Islanders land in Quebec in 2015.

  7. kb2126 - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:59 PM

    Funny story! The Yotes are staying in Arizona!

  8. oquintero99 - Apr 5, 2012 at 12:01 AM

    Downtown Phx worked. The city managers of Glendale were dumb to build that arena for the Yotes. I think they signed the contract with the NHL blindfolded. The NHL didnt screw Gkendale. It was the public officials for not doing the proper dilligence on this. And now the city is on the hook…

  9. greatminnesotasportsmind - Apr 5, 2012 at 1:25 AM

    I have a better idea…

    Move Phoenix to Hartford and reborn the Hartford Whalers.

    Brass Bonanza!!!!! Best goal song ever

  10. tmoore4075 - Apr 5, 2012 at 9:36 AM

    She has no business to be upset. If she thought the deal with Hulsizer really was going through with all the GWI stuff she was dumb. The NHL said a deal was gonna get done? Well guess what? Deals fall apart. You should have planned for that possiblity no matter what the NHL or anyone else was saying. Smart people plan for everything. If they thought: “what if this fall apart can we afford it?” they probably aren’t in this position.

    Should NEVER have gone to Glendale.

    • tmoore4075 - Apr 5, 2012 at 9:37 AM

      Please delete double post.

  11. tmoore4075 - Apr 5, 2012 at 9:36 AM

    She has no business to be upset. If she thought the deal with Hulsizer really was going through with all the GWI stuff she was dumb. The NHL said a deal was gonna get done? Well guess what? Deals fall apart. You should have planned for that possibility no matter what the NHL or anyone else was saying. Smart people plan for everything. If they thought: “what if this fall apart can we afford it?” they probably aren’t in this position.

    Should NEVER have gone to Glendale.

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