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Daly confident in Ice Edge, Coyotes deal

Monday, 12.14.2009 / 2:16 PM / News

By Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

"We're, as a group, extremely interested in buying the team from the NHL and are extremely excited. It leads to the last chapter, the team coming out of bankruptcy, run for a short period by the NHL, and selling to an owner that is willing to keep them in Glendale. What people need is to really believe definitively that the team is not leaving, to be able to open up their hearts again." -- Daryl Jones

NEW YORK -- NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly is confident the League and Ice Edge Holdings will work out a deal in the coming months that will keep the Phoenix Coyotes in Arizona for the foreseeable future.

Prior to flying to California for the NHL's Board of Governors meetings Tuesday and Wednesday in Pebble Beach, Daly updated the Phoenix situation during an appearance on NHL Live! Monday afternoon.

"The City of Glendale (Arizona, home of Jobing.com Arena) is very motivated for this team to be successful and, obviously, they want a healthy tenant," Daly said. "But they realize they also can't sustain the magnitude of losses sustained over the last couple of years and they'll work very closely with the Ice Edge group to come up with a win-win situation to create new revenue streams for the club and I think it should be successful."

Ice Edge has admitted one way to subsidize their revenue is to play no more than five regular-season home games outside Glendale -- perhaps in Saskatoon, Sask.

"I think that continues to be an ask on their part; I know it's part of their Letter of Intent and it continues to be," Daly said. "That'll ultimately be something they have to get the City of Glendale to agree to because the current use of the agreement for the arena requires the Coyotes to play all their home game in Glendale, so it's a negotiating point for Ice Edge and the city. Secondly, it's an issue that'll have to be approved by the Board of Governors when we bring the Ice Edge group up for approval."

Daly was quick to point out, however, that's something that wouldn't be discussed over the next two days in Pebble Beach.

"This isn't a first step out of Glendale, either," said Daly when discussing Ice Edge's plans for five games in Canada. "(Ice Edge's) view is they can make these games profitable and actually subsidize their revenues in the early years. They don't want to do it forever. They certainly don't even want to do it for a long time -- just a couple of years as a short-term subsidy, for a lack of a better term, on the revenue side."

On Friday, Daly announced that the NHL and Ice Edge had entered into a Letter of Intent to proceed in attempting to document and close the sale of the Coyotes to Ice Edge. Ice Edge Holdings is a group of eight Canadian and U.S. businessmen.

"We're, as a group, extremely interested in buying the team from the NHL and are extremely excited," Ice Edge Holdings chief operating officer Daryl Jones told the Arizona Republic. "It leads to the last chapter, the team coming out of bankruptcy, run for a short period by the NHL, and selling to an owner that is willing to keep them in Glendale. What people need is to really believe definitively that the team is not leaving, to be able to open up their hearts again."

Upon its pending purchase, Ice Edge would assume the duration of a 30-year lease that was established by the Coyotes when Jobing.com Arena first opened in 2003.

"When our clubs work with local municipalities on public/private partnerships around buildings, part of the deal you enter into is a long-term commitment with the city," Daly said. "On this case, Mr. (Jerry) Moyes (former Coyotes owner) entered into that commitment and had a 30-year lease. Ice Edge group just wants to assume the existing commitment to the City of Glendale."

Contact Mike Morreale at mmorreale@nhl.com.


I didn't think it would actually work, but it ended up working, so I'm thanking my lucky stars tonight.

— Columbus forward Nick Foligno on scoring the overtime goal after telling the Blue Jackets in the locker room that he would win the game