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Auston Matthews: New Coyotes arena would be awesome

Maple Leafs center, Arizona native says project could be boost to growth of hockey in area

by Dan Rosen @DRosenNHL / Senior Writer

TORONTO -- Count Toronto Maple Leafs rookie and Scottsdale, Arizona native Auston Matthews among those excited for the potential of a new home for the Arizona Coyotes in Tempe, Arizona.

The Coyotes on Monday announced plans to partner with Catellus Development Corporation, the master developer for the Arizona State University Athletic Facilities District, to work toward building a 16,000-plus seat arena for the NHL team with an attached 4,000-seat multi-sport arena.

"That's awesome news," Matthews said.

Matthews said the development of a new rink and arena district for the Coyotes and ASU would create a huge boost to the growth of ice hockey in the area, specifically in the East Valley region of the greater Phoenix metro area.

The Coyotes currently play in Gila River Arena in Glendale, which is in the West Valley area.

"They're pairing with ASU so it's going to be huge to share that rink," he said. "I think it's going to be a little bit easier commute for all the kids that want to go watch it. It's only about a 20-minute drive from where I'm from as opposed to an hour to Glendale. It's a good location and it's going to be two teams playing in that one building, so it's going to be pretty awesome."

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