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Report: Phoenix could host an All-Star Game in near future

Aug 6, 2013, 10:37 PM EDT

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Not very long ago, it seemed possible that the Phoenix Coyotes would end their days in Glendale. Now it appears that Arena could very well host a future All-Star Game.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman didn’t commit to a specific year, but he told the Arizona Republic’s Sarah McLellan that it’s in the league’s plans.

“We’re going to do that at some point,” Bettman said. “I don’t know what the date is yet but it’ll be our pleasure to honor a commitment to bring the All-Star Game here.”

Coyotes alternate governor Anthony LeBlanc made it clear to Arizona Sports’ 620 on Tuesday that doing so is one of the new ownership goals.

“We have had the discussions with the league; that is part of our agreement,” LeBlanc said. “The time-frame is what’s in question because there’s a fair amount of work that has to go into it to ensure that the proper accommodations and (that) it’s not a conflict with another major event.”

One year that could probably be crossed off the list is 2015, as the Arizona Cardinals will host the Super Bowl then.

Bettman and LaBlanc indicate that it’s just a matter of time, though.

  1. pitpenguinsrulez - Aug 6, 2013 at 10:45 PM

    Really!? Bettman!? Are you serious!? Why not bring the Allstar Game to Pittsburgh (a hockey town) instead. If not Pittsburgh then you have plenty of choices such as Philly, New York, Boston, Detroit. Pick a place that ACTUALLY has hockey fans

    • ron05342 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:16 PM

      Phoenix has hockey fans, you moron.

      Maybe not nearly as many as Pittsburgh, but they are there. Stop piling on, jerk off.

      • hockeyflow33 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:21 PM

        No thanks, enough of your garbage market. Move the team somewhere that will actually work.

      • ron05342 - Aug 7, 2013 at 1:31 AM

        @ hockeyflow33: hey imbecile, anyone who has been posting here long enough knows I am a Kings fan. It’s not my market. But I know cretins like yourself really don’t know the economics of hockey, so let me give you an education: Phoenix is good for the NHL, and especially for the Pacific. Travel times for the rivals are reduced immensely. The market, as it becomes more saturated with hockey fans, will become more stable. I’ve seen it happen in southern California. You are the same type of fool who can’t or won’t see the vision.

        Look forward, dufus. Not backward. And 50 years from now when the (Arizona) Coyotes are still around and your team isn’t, give me a call.


      • alexo0 - Aug 7, 2013 at 1:43 AM

        I guess for the past 17 years the fans have been waiting for ownership to stabilize before they decided to support the team. Problem solved.

    • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:33 PM

      You’re list stopped a bit too soon. Chicago leads the league in attendance – 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013. The change occurred when ownership passed to the son of a prime-time cheapscape, who turned the club around from being fan alienating to fan friendly. And wining instead of losing.

      They lead in both attendance per game and % attendance (read standing room only)

      • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:00 AM

        What in the world was there to “thumb down”? This is pure fact. I did not say anything positive or negative about PHX. I did not say it should be played in Chicago. I’m just responding to Pit Penguin’s overly short list, as if the only places that have “actual hockey fans” are eastern TX USA locals.

        It may be that there are som other ORIGINAL SIX cities that have had fan support for longer than the Pens have been in existance!

        During the same time period, Pens were 12th, 11th, 12, 16th and 18th in attendance.

        That sounds pretty “average”. Oh, silly me, why disturm a nice illusion with actual objective facts.

        And also on the topic of eastern elitism (which your list comes across as), you may want to look at which conference has done the best in inter-conference play the last few years it was in existance.

      • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:08 AM

        Meant eastern TZ (Time Zone) USA. I suppose there are a few Leaf and Habs fans who know a little bit about hockey as well;)

      • ron05342 - Aug 7, 2013 at 1:32 AM

        I did it just because you asked. :)

      • clefty1 - Aug 7, 2013 at 8:35 AM

        I remember not to long ago the Hawks could not draw 9,000 to some games and the only time they would sellout is when the Red Wings came to town because the United Center would fill up with Wings fans. I believe the United Center has the largest capacity in the league.

      • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 7, 2013 at 9:48 AM

        Yup, and I noted above that the change in attendance was highly related to the change in ownership.

    • clefty1 - Aug 7, 2013 at 8:31 AM

      Pittsburgh had to be saved twice, once by Mario then Crosby, the team could not draw until both of them arrived and if I remember Pittsburgh was possibly going to move until both saved the franchise at different times. There are plenty of northern transplants in Phoenix that would help with ticket sales.

      • georgiared - Aug 8, 2013 at 2:03 AM

        Couldn’t have said it better clefty1. Pittsburgh had fans with Winnepeg Penguins shirts on & their owner(who happens to be the franchise’s greatest player) was talking with Kansas City…..KANSAS CITY! about moving the team there because they had averaged 11,000 fans. Gotta love how their bandwagon fans keep clamoring they are “such great supporters of the team” while saying other teams should move due to “lack of support”. My Jackets might not sell out every night, but we’ve averaged fewer than 15,000 the same amount of times as the the Penguins have in the last 10 years and haven’t come anywhere close to only averaging 11,000.

  2. tru2joelu4eva - Aug 6, 2013 at 10:50 PM

    come PHT readers, let us pray to tim tebow that this never happens.

  3. steelers88 - Aug 6, 2013 at 10:51 PM

    Yeah why not Pittsburgh? The Penguins have basically a brand spanking new arena!

  4. x50cal - Aug 6, 2013 at 10:55 PM

    Go Yotes I’ll be going

  5. ravenscaps48 - Aug 6, 2013 at 10:58 PM

    Winnipeg, Pittsburgh, Washington, Detroit, and Anaheim should all be ahead of Phoenix

    • ravenscaps48 - Aug 7, 2013 at 10:01 AM

      All 19 Coyotes Fans dislike my comment

      • awade9233 - Aug 7, 2013 at 2:28 PM

        Hey smart guy, look up the weather in February for those cities vs. Phoenix. It’s gonna be Columbus in 2015 and Phoenix in 2016, get over it.

    • ravenscaps48 - Aug 7, 2013 at 7:17 PM

      So your selling point for a sporting event that’s held indoors in a 55 degree arena, is the weather outside? Yeah. I’m the smart guy

      • zfeint - Aug 10, 2013 at 11:45 PM

        I’d rather sit in an arena with 19 Coyotes fans than a sold out arena of elitists.

  6. phxhockeyfan - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:04 PM

    About time! Phoenix was supposed to host All Star game in 2005, but lost it when the lockout of 04-05 hit. Can’t wait!! Best week ever to be a Coyotes fan in a long damn time!!! Go Yotes!!!!!

  7. 19to77 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:04 PM

    This is the sound of Gary Bettman trying way too f*cking hard to convince the world putting the NHL in Arizona hasn’t been a massive failure.

    • zfeint - Aug 10, 2013 at 11:47 PM

      There are more than enough northerners in Arizona to make the NHL work. Just tell your neighbors, friends, family, coworkers/fellow students who have moved to Arizona to stop supporting their home teams and support their new, adopted home team (in Arizona, where they live). Or at least support both. 😉

  8. mrpinkca - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:06 PM

    So do the Blue Jackets get screwed or does this happen with one year left until the opt out clause?

    • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:05 AM

      You may waht to explain your post, I’m clueless.

      • hockeyflow33 - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:45 AM

        They lost last year’s game because of the lockout, weird you’d miss that with your superior analysis skills.

      • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 7, 2013 at 9:50 AM

        I missed it was slated to be there. I’m not a know it all. Some folks are more attuned to some facets of all things hockey than others, less attuned than others in other areas.

  9. jacketsfan7 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:08 PM

    What about my all-star game? I had tickets to that game…damn I just can’t catch a break this year

  10. blvckhvwks - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:10 PM

    You gotta be kidding me. Nobody is gonna wanna go to Arizona and you know for sure the locals won’t show up. The closest fan base is the Kings and Ducks and we all know even die-hard California fans won’t leave California for their team.

    • ron05342 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:19 PM

      Ah, another moron.

      Kings fans filled arena for the WCF in 2012. They were the reason for the sell outs. Pay attention, eh?

      You think the Kings fans transported there via Star Trek technology? Doubtful. They made the drive or flew there.

      Get a clue as to what you are talking about before posting. It makes you look stupid.

      • phxhockeyfan - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:48 PM

        Why I like you comment overall. it wasn’t Kings fans that made the games sell out. All 9 playoff games sold out that year, including the Chicago and Nashville series. I was there for all three series. There were probably 500 Kings fans splashed throughout the arena, but it’s easy to see with the whiteout. Black and purple can’t hide in the sea of white. I’ve made the drive to LA and Anaheim to see the Yotes play there. Always fun to make the road trip to see some hockey.

      • comeonnowguys - Aug 7, 2013 at 8:34 AM

        What about the games last season, where the PA people had to come up with ways to drown out the opposing fanbase’s cheers?

      • faulkingallstar - Aug 8, 2013 at 4:02 AM

        @phxhockeyfan the coyotes playoff games may have sold out, but ur not taking into account how little their tickets cost. Others teams in the league like Carolina may have poorer attendance, but that’s only because they don’t sell their tickets for $20 each just to say we filled up an arena, at the same time were losing money and it looks bad on tv during reg season games in phx when their are 2 fans per row because people buy the $5 tickets and don’t show

    • zfeint - Aug 10, 2013 at 11:49 PM

      That’s a joke, bud. When I lived in Los Angeles, I traveled to watch the Kings play in Glendale. It was the beginning of the season, nothing major. You’re one elitist sack of garbage. Get over yourself; you’re not the only hockey fan in the world.

  11. longcutskolvikes - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:18 PM

    Pittsburg is not a hockey town. They were in Phoenix’s position in the years between Lemieux and Crosby. If Pittsburg is a hockey town now it’s because the league was patient much in the same manner they’ve been with Phoenix. With the inevitability of expansion, this is good news. Let’s (NHL fans) all hope Phoenix is as strong of a market for hockey as Pittsburg is today in the future.

    • radar584 - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:41 AM

      Pittsburg isn’t a hockey town cause its in Kansas. Now Pittsburgh is a hockey town from high school all the way to pros

    • ethanmacleod1685 - Aug 7, 2013 at 9:46 AM

      Well said

  12. jacketsfan7 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:21 PM

    How about Detroit , before they take down the joe?

  13. baseballbarrister - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:23 PM

    The Verizon Center has been open since 1997 and has hosted the NBA and WNBA All Star games. It’s beyond time to give Caps the All Star Game.

    • atwatercrushesokoye - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:50 PM

      Did anybody actually go to the WNBA all star game?

    • hockeyflow33 - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:46 AM

      You would have made a legitimate point except you cited the WNBA

      • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 7, 2013 at 9:54 AM

        Ah, but political correctness is SO SO important in the DC area, where “approved” viewpoints” trump reality on a daily basis.

  14. stevebass2 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:26 PM

    Before everyone on PHT with Phoeniphobia gets their panties in a knot, it’s important to point out that Phoenix was supposed to get the All Star Game in 2005, but that was killed by the lockout, and were initially promised a new one in 2010, but the ownership issues and Olympics did away with that. The city is more than overdue.

    • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:04 AM

      Thanks 4 bringing actual facts into the discussion. I tried and got the downthumb thing.

    • thailer35 - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:13 AM

      Yes!! The word Phoeniphobia is finally catching on!!

  15. blkeskimo1785 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:42 PM

    One vote for Sacramento! For NO apparent reason!

  16. jwalsh217 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:48 PM

    they better host an all star game some time in the next 5 years or the NHL is going to miss their chance

  17. atwatercrushesokoye - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:48 PM

    Phoenix makes sense for an all-star game for several reasons: 1. The all-star game is meant to cater to the NHL sponsors, it’s a weekend of wining and dining, makes sense for them to want to do it in a warm location. 2. Because of that the building will be at least 50% filled with those sponsors, I’m guessing Arizona fans can fill the other 50%. 3. The players will likely be more excited to go to a place where they can relax in warm weather and golf so you might see all of the players selected actually go and have some (not as bad in hockey as in football) come down with mysterious injuries that keep them away.

    And 4. There haven’t been many people on this site more outspoken about moving the Coyotes than me, BUT now that they’re trying to do this they need to give it everything they have, if having the world’s best players there for a weekend can help the team fan base grow and attract more paying customers then I think they need to do that. Yes there are plenty of deserving “hockey cities” that are in line for this game, but putting an all-star game in Philly or Pittsburgh or Winnipeg isn’t going to help the NHL grow in those cities, they’re going to be hockey cities regardless.

  18. blomfeld - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:50 PM


    Notwithstanding the obvious ‘tax shield’ benefits no doubt being derived by the NHL, the fact remains that for the life of me, I still don’t ‘truly’ understand why Bettman has drawn ‘a line in the sand’ like this, so to speak ? So the All-Star game is ‘apparently’ going to be held in Phoenix AZ ? Why hell yeah ! … and let’s have the Super Bowl in Tombstone ! Heck, I could even see the Tour de France being held on Route 66 through such ‘bicycle crazy’ towns like Flagstaff, Williams and Kingman.

    Friends, the bottom line is that comrade Bettman appears to have now ‘truly’ lost his mind and therefore the time has come for ‘things’ to happen … and God willing, they now will …

    • thailer35 - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:14 AM


  19. pennerismyhomeboy - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:22 AM

    look at it this way. flying to phoenix and buying a ticket to the all-star game will be cheaper than going to your home stadium!

    • hockeyflow33 - Aug 7, 2013 at 12:47 AM

      including lodging and a rental car?

  20. buford2000 - Aug 7, 2013 at 1:24 AM

    How about bringing the all star weekend to Buffalo? I’ve been waiting!

    • lionstigersandwingsohmy - Aug 7, 2013 at 8:20 AM

      Buffalo would be a great choice. Location is perfect and the people are very nice there.

  21. faulkingallstar - Aug 7, 2013 at 2:15 AM

    Awesome, a game with all the best superstars in the world will be play in front of a whoping 20 fans

    • zfeint - Aug 10, 2013 at 11:55 PM

      There are so many northerners in Arizona… your comment makes no sense. You elitist pigs will fill the arena, don’t worry.

  22. longcutskolvikes - Aug 7, 2013 at 7:50 AM

    Good catch Radar. That’s my point. You can’t tell me Pittsburgh was a “hockey town” 10 or 20 years ago. It’s become that way because the Pens have been successful and helped to grow the sport. I sincerely hope to see Phoenix develop a fan base like the Penguins have some day.

  23. whitdog23 - Aug 7, 2013 at 8:15 AM

    don’t they want to be known as Arizona? that’s what Tuesday’s article said. now it’s back to Phoenix

  24. comeonnowguys - Aug 7, 2013 at 8:35 AM

    Yep, an All-Star game may be just the ticket to get them to skyrocket into 25th in attendance.

  25. endusersolutions2013 - Aug 7, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    Well, it’s put up or shut up time for (whatever) Coyotes fans – not only personally attending but becoming team ambassadors/evangelists. To even get to the mid point of attendance in 4 years, attendance will have to average 7% increases year over year.

    If you collectively fail to support, it will be time to look in the mirror.

    You have a new/final lease on local team life. Make the best of it.

    • awade9233 - Aug 7, 2013 at 2:42 PM

      New season ticket packages and renewals have each gone up for the past four seasons. I’ve lived in phoenix my whole life, and it’s almost sad that the sports fans are majorly bandwagon fans. They can do that because there are 4 pro teams here. With the millions of regular residents combined with thousands of people who live down here for the winter, I can’t see why it would be unreasonable for attendance to continue to rise. The new owners have already started marketing, with new billboards up on major freeways and a meet and greet with season ticket holders tonight. They want this to work, and if Don Maloney keeps working his magic and there is good on ice performance, then the fans will jump on the bandwagon.

  26. chicagofansaretheworst - Aug 8, 2013 at 1:05 PM

    This is a fantastic idea, What better way to get more fan support than by having the all star game in PHX? Thats what the allstar game is all about. Gaining more fan support and promotion. Why put it in a market thats already thriving? Every team should eventually get it at some point, but the teams that are struggling should get it before anyone else. Only the people that want the coyotes to fail are complaining about this. Its time that the coyotes be put on a level playing field as everyone else. Theyre always left out or put down. The team will never survive if no one will even think of giving them a chance. Theyve done nothing but prove everyone wrong up to this point and I feel they will continue to do so

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