Jerry Colangelo: Downtown Phoenix, Coyotes Best Fit

It’s been a summer to forget for the Arizona Coyotes.

Unfortunately, it’s really nothing new to the local franchise which has seen just about everything except consistent success on the ice in the past dozen years after re-locating to the desert in the mid-1990’s.

The latest squabble comes between the franchise and the city which, for now, hosts their home games.

The dispute doesn’t come as much of a surprise to a man who’s negotiated his fair share of arena/venue deals here in the Valley.

“Almost inevitable [there] would be a clash because of the deal that was cut originally,” Arizona sports icon and USA Basketball Chairman Jerry Colangelo told’s Brad Cesmat Wednesday morning of the Coyotes’ dispute with the City of Glendale. “This is not a surprise in terms of the issues that people have been talking about for a number of years in terms of location, in terms of difficulty getting to events.”

He understands a cross-town weekend trip to see the Arizona Cardinals a hand full of times each year, a must-see concert or special event isn’t a problem but committing to 40-50 games a year in Glendale “is a real issue” but can be overblown depending on who you talk to and where you live in the east Valley.

So is there any merit to the whispers of the Coyotes relocating back to downtown Phoenix to possibly share a facility with the Phoenix Suns?

“I’m aware of the speculation, the rumors suggesting [Talking Stick Resort Arena] becoming a mall and a new facility,” Colangelo said. “If there was a new arena I’d prefer to see it in downtown Phoenix…it would help downtown become what it is now becoming.”

As they say, “home is where the heart is.”

The Coyotes simply need to figure out where their best home may be.