Skip to content

Report: NHL has Seattle plan ready for Coyotes

Jun 16, 2013, 9:59 AM EDT

Seattle Getty Images

CBC’s Hot Stove panel dropped a few bombs last night but one the biggest may concern the future of the Phoenix Coyotes.

Elliotte Friedman of CBC reported the Vancouver Canucks wanted to move their AHL farm team to Seattle and Key Areana but were rebuffed by the NHL because the city was not available to them. Instead, they announced the team’s move to Utica, NY.

Why wasn’t Seattle available?

Glenn Healy reports that should Renaissance Sports & Entertainment unable to close a deal with the City of Glendale by July 2, the Coyotes would be sold Ray Bartoszek and Anthony Lanza for $220 million and they would move the team to Seattle. If that group winds up purchasing the team, Jeremy Roenick will also be part of hockey operations.

Bartoszek and Lanza are no strangers to ownership rumors as two years ago they were close to buying part of the New York Mets.

As we know with the Coyotes situation, nothing is ever final until it’s signed off on, but it’s clear the league’s endgame with the franchise is coming, the only question left will be if it’s in Glendale or Seattle.

  1. scionofflame - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:01 AM

    Pleaaaaaase be Seattle. Moving there next year, and I want a hockey team!

    • dirt2013 - Jun 16, 2013 at 8:39 PM

      No problem because Vancouver is a short drive north.

  2. vstar1us - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:10 AM

    I think that would be great!

  3. giantssb42champs - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:10 AM

    I’d take Seattle over Phoenix all day. Seattle Metropolitans!

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Jun 16, 2013 at 2:49 PM

      Gets my vote. They were the first US-based team to win the Stanley Cup. But you knew that, right? 1917, three years before Jagr and Selanne entered the NHL. :-)

  4. tmoore4075 - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:15 AM

    I know people will say Quebec and they should and will get a team. But there is more money in expanding there and I think this news shows they will be expanding. We’ll know soon enough.

    • jcmeyer10 - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:23 AM

      I agree but it makes a lot of sense with the realignment plan to keep the team in the Western Conference.

      Quebec will get theirs.

      • tmoore4075 - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:25 PM

        Oh I agree on all of that. I hope they go to Seattle. I think it makes more sense than Phoenix.

  5. jacketsfan7 - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:38 AM

    I’d love to see a team in Seattle

  6. titansbro - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:41 AM

    Way better locale than the desert.

  7. pastabelly - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:42 AM

    Seattle is a bigger market than Quebec and the NHL should go there before the NBA gets back there. Agree that it would still be great to get the NHL back in Quebec.

    • channelguy - Jun 16, 2013 at 5:22 PM

      It doesn’t matter if the NHL gets into Seattle before the NBA. The second the NBA DOES arrive, it becomes the prime tenant and the NHL gets the leftover dates.

      That being said, Seattle would be a better home than Phoenix — although thats admittedly not a high compliment.

      The sad thing is that Quebec City and Markham are FAR superior to Seattle, but the NHL seems to have a plan in place to offer them expansion franchises once their arenas are built. Thats great for the 30 existing owners, pocketing a nice expansion fee. But most fans who follow the game closely think the calibre of play would be improved by contraction, and that adding two more teams will only worsen play.

  8. 950003cups - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    Been saying Seattle for years. The climate can expand hockey at the grassroots level.

    What’s a good name?
    Seattle Starbucks?
    Seattle Suicides? DiPi can be a starter (jk)
    Seattle Sonics? (ode to super sonics)
    Seattle Ice Hammers?
    Seattle Wasps? (hi boomer)
    Seattle Sucks?
    Seattle Rain?
    Seattle Sled Dogs?

    Pick a possible name.

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:03 PM

      Some of those just aren’t even remotely funny

      • blomfeld - Jun 16, 2013 at 2:08 PM

        as opposed to you, who is positively hilarious ? … pssst !

    • blomfeld - Jun 16, 2013 at 2:09 PM

      Seattle Jetsam ?

    • comeonnowguys - Jun 17, 2013 at 2:46 PM

      If it isn’t already trademaked, it would be hilarious to see them snag the Sonics before the NBA returned.

  9. 950003cups - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:48 AM

    Oh, and yes, Quebec should get a team again. How about Panthers relocate? Isn’t their building old anyway? I love when Quebec fans raid our building. Makes us appreciate having a team and it must be supported by showing, no matter how big the sport is in your area. Otherwise it could end up leaving as was Quebec and Winnipeg.

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:17 PM

      Explain to me why the Panthers should move?

      Is it their 99.7% to capacity they play in front of?

      Is it their nearly 17,000 fans per game?

      All of that with the worst record in the league

      All of this yet, they have made the playoffs once since 1999-2000 which is when the Atlanta Thrashers (who in case you forgot is no longer in Atlanta) were in expansion team. No matter the team and no matter the sport, when your a team that is that bad for that long, your going to have attendance problems. Like the guy said above, don’t confuse a bad hockey market for a bad team.

      • Windmiller4 - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:29 PM

        Have you watched a panthers game lately? It doesn’t look anywhere near 99.7% full. Not to mention they seem to lose money every year. So yea, they should move somewhere else that better supports them

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:23 PM

        Looks pretty full to me, except the premium center ice seats which are $98 a piece directly behind the benches. If Florida were a playoff team in February, those are probably sold as well.

      • blomfeld - Jun 16, 2013 at 2:13 PM

        “Looks pretty full to me” ? …

        Well if that’s the case, then it must be so eh ?

      • tdrusher225 - Jun 16, 2013 at 2:56 PM

        I would try to look at TV ratings and media interest around the area as well before Florida a good hockey market. They have very little financial value and seem to consistently be among the NHL’s money-losing teams. However, I agree that there are plenty of teams that you could look at before Florida, like Dallas, Anaheim, Columbus, etc. that also would be suited to move to better markets. But I certainly wouldn’t put Florida on the list of teams I want to keep either.

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 4:35 PM

        The fatal flaw in your argument is that nobody watches the NHL on TV. In case you forgot the NHL drew a 1.0 share for the Stanley Cup finals last year between 2 large markets in Los Angeles and New Jersey. That means 1% of all televisions in the US watched that. Game 1 this year drew a 2.4 share which isn’t a whole lot better.

      • source7769 - Jun 16, 2013 at 5:14 PM

        they are watching this year game 1 drew a 4+ rating

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 6:09 PM

        Not sure where you are getting your numbers but…

        On NBC, Stanley Cup Finals Game 1 scored a 2.4 adults 18-49 rating from 8-11PM, up 140 percent from a 1.0 fast national for last year’s game 1 on May 30, 2012. It undoubtedly helped that this year’s series is between two big hockey markets instead of Los Angeles and New Jersey.

      • narfmoo12 - Jun 16, 2013 at 7:44 PM

        This is why…

        You can buy a full season ticket package for $287.

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 8:14 PM

        Right, you can, but I promise you they aren’t lower level center ice for $7 a ticket. These tickets are in the upper end nose bleeds. Maybe you don’t realize that BB&T Center is the 6th largest NHL arena. Only United Center, Bell Centre, Joe Louis, Wells Fargo Center, and the Saddledome are larger.

        Florida will gladly sell you $7 nose bleeds when other arenas can’t do that based on capacity. Besides it’s not the $7 per ticket Florida is making money on. It’s the $9 beer, $6.50 hotdog, $4.50 small soda, $25 parking, $7 nachos, and $4 game program is where the money is made.

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:53 PM

      And BB&T Center opened in 1998. Which makes it newer than:

      ^Madison Square Garden- New York (1968)
      Rexall Place- Edmonton (1974)
      Joe Louis Arena- Detroit (1979)
      *Nassau Coliseum- New York (1983)
      Scotiabank Saddledome- Calgary (1983)
      Honda Center- Anaheim (1993)
      HP Pavillion at San Jose- San Jose (1993)
      Scottrade Center- St. Louis (1994)
      Rogers Center- Vancouver (1995)
      TD Garden- Boston (1995)
      First Niagara Center- Buffalo (1996)
      Scotiabank Place- Ottawa (1996)
      Tampa Bay Times Forum- Tampa Bay (1996)
      United Center- Chicago (1996)
      Wells Fargo Center- Philadelphia (1996)
      Bell Centre- Montreal (1996)
      Bridgestone Arena- Nashville (1996)
      Verizon Center- Washington (1997)

      ^being renovated now
      * originally opened in 1972 but expanded 1983. Moving to Brooklyn

  10. pastabelly - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:56 AM

    Both Florida teams average over 17K fans per game and play over 99% capacity. Panthers play in the burbs and their arena is less than 15 years old. Hockey works in Fort Lauderdale, despite having a crappy team. Don’t confuse it with Phoenix or Atlanta.

    • Jackson Scofield - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:49 AM

      Actually play in Sunrise, not Fort Lauderdale

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:05 PM

        Sunrise is a suburb of Fort Lauderdale.

      • Jackson Scofield - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:15 PM

        Which is still not in Fort Lauderdale, which is pretty much a suburb of Miami itself.

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:06 PM

        Miami and Fort Lauderdale are basically the same thing as Minneapolis and St. Paul. Yes, they are together in a metro sense, but they are 2 different cities.

        Sunrise is a suburb of Fort Lauderdale, which is the same thing as Glendale and Phoenix

  11. orangeandblack31 - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:20 AM

    Thank god. Phoenix was a joke for a NHL team and a bad move by the NHL.
    Seattle will be a much better place where then can actually sign free agents!

  12. bardown66 - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:23 AM

    Lol inc angry québécois. Oh well it’s funny when they are mad. Regardless, this will put the coyotes in a new place that will probably appreciate them more. No more “the teams in Glendale it’s so far” whiney comments.

  13. jacketsfan7 - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:25 AM

    Seattle sonics would be good but tbh with you that joke about dipietro was pretty tasteless

  14. lallin66fan - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:36 AM

    Nice, I always wanted a NHL team in Seattle! Its a great place to establish a good fan base, better than in the desert that for sure.

    And maybe now I don’t have to create the Seattle Sounds in the NHL games anymore. 😉

  15. pavelfitzgerald - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:41 AM

    Even as a Canadian I understand the rational here. It’s nice to finally see some rational thinking from Bettman for a change.

    There is more money to be made from Quebec as an expansion team, then a relocation. The NHL knows that Quebec will stay there as a viable, competent option.

    • hockeyflow33 - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:46 AM

      If that was the case, why would the franchise have left in the first place?

      • Jackson Scofield - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:51 AM

        Canadian Dollar was extremely weak when the Winnipeg Jets and the Nordiques de Québec moved.

      • hockeyflow33 - Jun 17, 2013 at 6:12 PM

        I know, so why would you expect that to not happen again?

      • phillyphanatic77 - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:42 PM

        There was no salary cap then, so smaller market teams were not able to compete financially to lure top-end talent. It’s almost an even playing field today, which makes it easier for small/mid-markets to acquire and keep their talent

  16. Jackson Scofield - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:51 AM

    Think they stay in Glendale, pains me to say it.

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:10 PM

      No way, we’ve been down this road before. It will all seem nice and dandy until the last minute, when the Goldwater Institute gets their noses in it. Then killing any deal that was set up.

      • pimares - Jun 16, 2013 at 7:24 PM

        Goldwater will only get involved if the lease doesn’t benefit the city more than just letting them leave. Besides Goldwater is neck deep in fighting Obamcare in AZ, They have much bigger fish to fry than some hockey deal. So at this point logic says Coyotes will continue to call Glendale home……..The City Council doesn’t what the Coyotes leaving to be their fault and the recent developments show their not going to let them leave.

  17. blomfeld - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:07 PM


    “Glenn Healy reports that should Renaissance Sports & Entertainment BE unable to close a deal with the City of Glendale by July 2, the Coyotes would THEN be sold BY Ray Bartoszek and Anthony Lanza for $220 million and they would move the team to Seattle”.

    As an ardent and values-driven fan of the current reigning Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings, I completely support moving the hapless Coyotes to Seattle. The Emerald City would make for a wonderful and highly ‘profitable’ NHL location and the lucrative “I-5” synergies to be had with the Vancouver Canucks go without saying. So in the words of that dynamic statesman George W Bush, I say “bring ’em on” ! :)

    • Jackson Scofield - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:17 PM

      Be, then, and to as opposed to be, then, and by

  18. ryanw822 - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:54 PM

    lol@ 99.7% capacity.

    I want the Panthers to stay but lets not make stuff up. I went to the Tor-Fla game in Feb in Sunrise when my sister got 2 comp tickets. We sat in the upper deck behind one of the goals and there may have been 40 of us in the entire section. The arena may have been 70% full at the most and 75% of those fans were for the visitors.

    I can only imagine how full the games are when its Carolina, NYI,etc.

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:21 PM

      Oh you mean that game where the lower bowl is completely full except for the Premium Center ice seats (row 2-17 behind the benches) which are $98 each.

    • valarmorghuliss - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:59 PM

      lol @ caring about how many are at the game
      lol @ for caring who is being rooted for

      lol @ not understanding that 99.7% of seats sold is all that matters

  19. sunk500 - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:19 PM

    As a Seattelite and a diehard hockey fan I’m so excited about this. Seattle already has a pretty decent youth hockey scene and we got 3 WHL teams in place so NHL seems like an appropriate next step for Seattle and the NHL. Previous NHL exhibition teams also did great when they came here and don’t forget the rivalry we would have with the Canucks.

  20. mfinneran - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:34 PM

    Great city, do it now.

  21. jernster21 - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:37 PM

    This is good news for Seattle fans in regards to Seattle being a potential landing spot but the odds of the Coyotes being the team to end up there is looking pretty slim. If the Glendale BoG’s have a principle agreement in place on a lease then this is all but two meetings away from being a done deal (Glendale BoG meeting and NHL BoG meeting). Of course it’s not done till it’s done but don’t get too excited….yet.

    • pimares - Jun 16, 2013 at 7:31 PM

      Exactly, The Glendale City Council has shown in recent days they are working feverishly to make this work. They known the hourglass is almost up. Also RSE is really working hard to structure the agreement to work for both sides well. My money is on them staying put. Oh and the city has scheduled a just in case meeting on the 28th if they need an extra meeting for the final vote if they can’t do it by the 25th. There is a non-voting meeting on Tuesday the 18th to discuss the deal. Then the following week is when a vote would take place. By that time all information regarding the deal must be released 2 (business) days prior to a vote.

  22. kaptaanamerica - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:58 PM

    The Coyotes aren’t going anywhere unless it’s Seattle , and there will be expansion to Quebec and to Markham. There deserves to be a hockey team in the Toronto metro area for real hockey fans to cheer for and not the one that some loser cultists follow and CBC pushes on the citizens of Canada.

  23. ray2013 - Jun 16, 2013 at 3:32 PM

    I’m curious about something; are there no territorial considerations that would come into play? When we heard the Coyotes could be moved to Hamilton, that there would be territorial considerations that could prevent that move.

    Do the Canucks have any say over moving a team that close to them? It’s around 120 miles from the lower mainland to Seattle. I don’t think the Canucks would have a problem with a Seattle team; it would make west coast travel a lot easier and create a local rival. I’m just wondering if they would have a say.

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 8:44 PM

      According to the NHL Constitution:

      Section 4.1 Definitions. For the purposes of this Article:
      (a) “Home club” means the member at whose arena a game is played
      (b) “Visiting club” means a member whose team is playing at the arena of another member.
      (c) “Home territory” with respect to any member, means: Each Member Club shall have exclusive territorial rights in the city in which it is located and within fifty miles of that city’s corporate limits.
      (d) “News” includes reports, descriptions and accounts of hockey games.
      (e) “Broadcasts” and “broadcasting” mean and include publication or dissemination by radio, telegraph, telephone or television

      Section 4.2 Territorial Rights of the League
      The League shall have exclusive control of the playing of hockey games by Member Clubs in the home territory of each member, subject to the rights hereinafter granted to members. The members shall have the right to agree to operate professional hockey clubs and play the League schedule in their respective cities or boroughs as indicated opposite their signatures hereto. No member shall transfer its club and franchise to a different city or borough. No additional cities or boroughs shall be added to the League circuit without the consent of three-fourths of all the members of the League. Any admission of new members with franchise to operate in any additional cities or boroughs shall be subject to the provisions of Section 4.3

      Section 4.3 Territorial Rights of Members
      Each member shall have exclusive control of the playing of hockey games within its home territory including, but not being limited to, the playing in such home territory of hockey games by any teams owned or controlled by such member or by other members of the League. Subject only to the exclusive rights of other members with respect to their respective home territories as hereinabove set forth, nothing herein contained shall be constructed to limit the right of any Member Club to acquire any interest in any hockey team, whether professional or amateur in any league which recognizes and honors the territorial rights, contracts, and reserve lists of the National Hockey League, except as limited by Section 8.1(a) of this Constitution. No other member of the League shall be permitted to play games (except regularly scheduled League games with the home club) in the home territory of a member without the latter member’s consent. No franchise shall be granted for a home territory within the home territory of a member, without the written consent of such member.

      4.4 Property Rights of Home Club
      Each member hereby irrevocably conveys, grants and assigns forever all the right, title and interest which it has or may have in and to each hockey game played by its team as a visiting club and in the news of said gam (including without limitation of the foregoing, the right to collect, disseminate, and sell and to license others to collect, disseminate, and sell the news of said game, whether by radio, telephone, television, telegraph or other means), to the member in whose home territory said game is played.

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 16, 2013 at 8:45 PM

      in short:

      50 miles

      • ray2013 - Jun 17, 2013 at 3:32 PM

        I appreciate the thorough response.

  24. capsrockva - Jun 16, 2013 at 9:36 PM

    I for one will miss the Coyote’s jerseys, ( they are cool as hell). That being said, I had a awesome name for the Seattle franchise last night or a couple nights ago, don’t remember which. I think Seattle King Crabs or Seattle Salmon or something like that

  25. andyreidisfat - Jun 16, 2013 at 9:56 PM

    It’s silly to have all these teams in areas that just can’t support them. The Phoenix move is a smart one.

    Now if they could just move the 2 floridas and Nashville things could really start to pick up. Oh and before you start quoting the amount of seats sold, understand that is just one part of supporting a team. Now instead of taking the one stat that fits argument, Fox News style, try looking at the whole picture. It’s great that the panthers fill 17 thousand a night, the problem is they are doing from a pool of 30 thousand fans. They don’t sell enough merch and can not command high advertising profits thus they get smaller tv deals. While I am sure the fans in Florida and Nashville that do go to games, and do watch them on tv, and buy the sweaters and every bit as loyal and rabid as any other fan base, there is just not enough of you.

    I still say contract two teams I would to the preds and panthers as they have been badly run franchises in the past and move Tampa to Quebec. Then let the players who were on those teams decide between entering a draft and keeping their current contract or having te contract tore up allowing them to be free agents.

    While I think a few players might opt for free agency, I would think a guy like weber would like to keep his insane deal and enter the draft. Since the bad teams would pick first this could be a shot in the arm for some franchises making the whole league better.

    Hockey has to face the facts that they are really 24 team sport these days. Even the players from over seas who are able to get big deals are staying. I think contraction would also limit the fighting. With more talent to spread around the game will become more interesting. Add to this adopting the Olympic sized rink and I think hockey could become so exciting that they could really start to compete with the big 3. More than that a game that is more skill and skating and less teeth getting knocked out is going to make American soccer moms way more willing to pay the 1500 every year for their kid to play.

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jun 17, 2013 at 12:41 AM

      Maybe the fact that Florida renegotiated naming rights with BB&T after it bought Bank Atlantic. Florida gave BB&T the option to renegotiate the naming rights or completely tear up the agreement. That nearly doubled the naming rights of the building from 2 million to 3.7 million per year for the next 10 seasons and up to 20 seasons, making that building the highest naming rights in Florida in any sport. Oh, and it’s the 5th largest in the NHL.

      Or perhaps you’d like to hear about the new agreement that doubled the amount of money Fox Sports Florida pays to air Panther games?

      Let’s say that on the low end of their tv deal, it went from 2 million to 4 million (NBC’s deal is worth 6 million per team), and with their new naming rights deal, Florida’s revenue jumps up to 91 million, up from 87 million. That makes them tied with Colorado and Anaheim at 91 million for 21st in the NHL. That puts them ahead of St. Louis 89 m, Tampa Bay 88 m, Nashville 88 m, Carolina 85, Columbus 85 m, Phoenix 83 m, Islanders 66 m.

      Florida sells 25 million dollars in tickets sold in 2012. That number went up this year as well as their attendance went up. It’s not like they are giving their tickets away either. Their average price was $48 dollars, ahead of New Jersey, Buffalo, Carolina, St., Louis, Tampa Bay, and Phoenix. At $48 per ticket, that puts with at about $10 per ticket from being in the middle of the NHL.

      All of this with Florida having 1 playoff appearance since 1999-00. It doesn’t matter what sport or what team, if you struggle for as long as they have on the ice, it’s going to be hard to sell tickets. With them making the playoffs for the first time in 2011-12, and their attendance going up the following season, there should and is reason for optimism that hockey can work in Florida.

  26. longcutskolvikes - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:21 PM

    I started watching panther’s games at the end of the season to see Bjugstadt. If they’re selling 98% of their seats, I’m Ken Yackel…

  27. hauckeydad - Jun 19, 2013 at 7:03 AM

    This all makes tons of sense. It solves realignment. Q your next. For hockey growth you need a base. New franchises create a building boom for local rinks. Seattle can support that meaning 15 years from now there will be a surge of talent available to the College and maybe even pro level. Seattle has a lot of transplants and local hockey knowledge to be parent coaches. USA hockey should gear up to make a massive education drive to certify parent coaches under ADM principles. Next step make a focus to add NCAA Hockey available to the Washington market. GO Go Go!

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Kane (1684)
  2. P. Kessel (1654)
  3. M. Richards (1400)
  4. P. Datsyuk (1244)
  5. N. Backstrom (1128)