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by Dave Vest / Arizona Coyotes
I spent some time chatting with Daryl Jones at Arena on Saturday night. Jones is the public voice of Ice Edge Holdings, a group of investors with their eyes on buying the Coyotes.

"Ice Edge is extremely interested in the Coyotes," Jones told me during the second intermission. "We did back out of the bankruptcy auction for a couple of different reasons, but we were down here most of this week in meetings with the City of Glendale. We're very interested in the Coyotes. We don't want to get too far ahead of ourselves, but once the NHL gets the team, hopefully, our intention would be to approach them and talk to them about buying the team."

Jones, who played hockey collegiately at Yale, went on to say that Ice Edge definitely wants to keep the team in Glendale long-term.

"Our sole purpose is to buy the team and operate the team in Glendale," Jones said. "We have no interest in moving the team. It's not even remotely part of our plan."

Jones said seeing the sell-out crowd at the home opener reaffirmed to him that hockey can work here.

"To me, this crowd tells me that there are hockey fans in the Valley," Jones said. "And I think this is one of the most incredible buildings in the league and it is incredibly well maintained. Hockey can succeed here. I think it just takes an ownership group that believes in the community. I think it's going to work."

Few things in life give me goose bumps. Oh sure, that old black and white photo of my paternal grandparents, who died before I was born, embracing at a picnic gets me every time. So does watching U2 perform Where The Streets Have No Name live in concert. But all in all, most things/events in daily life don’t even come close to inspiring that extraordinary reaction from me.

I had goose bumps Saturday night at the Welcome Back Whiteout. Big ones. If you were one of the fans who helped pack Arena, I thank you, and I’m guessing quite confidently that you had goose bumps, too.

TV Analyst Tyson Nash at the Welcome Back Whiteout.
How could you not? Despite the outcome of the game, it was a celebration and a special night, one that I sincerely hope will remind people in this town just how fun and exhilarating it is to attend a Phoenix Coyotes game. I hope also that the casual fans who attended realize what the hardcore fans already know: that this team is a good team on the right path and it will surprise the hockey experts, many of whom have already written it off because of the so-called “off-ice distractions.”

One thing I'm certain I will never forget from the Welcome Back Whiteout is the snazzy outfit Tyson Nash, our new TV Analyst, wore to the game. They say a picture is worth a thousand words. As a writer, I usually hate hearing that expression. But in this case it applies. Check out the photo to the right. 'Nuff said.

Blue Jackets Head Coach Ken Hitchcock expects the Coyotes to go far this season.

“This is a veteran hockey club with a lot of really solid pro players,” Hitchcock said. “Their center-ice position is as strong as anybody around right now. They’ve got depth at that position that 90 percent of the teams would love to have.”

There is a new message for the Coyotes players to see on the wall above the rack where they store their sticks inside the dressing room. It reads: “Individuals Play The Game. Teams Win Championships.”

Coyotes defenseman Keith Yandle is from Boston and is a huge Red Sox fan. On Saturday morning, I asked him if he had given up on their chances of beating the Los Angeles Angels (of Anaheim) in the ALDS after falling behind two games to none.

His answer was concise: “Never.”

Thanks for reading.


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