SBD/May 29, 2013/Franchises

NHL, Glendale Officials Meet With Potential Coyotes Owners About Arena Lease

Friday is the deadline for bids to operate Jobing.com Arena
The NHL, Renaissance Sports & Entertainment and city of Glendale yesterday held "preliminary talks to establish a framework for further negotiations on a Jobing.com Arena lease agreement," according to Craig Morgan of FOXSPORTSARIZONA.com. The "real work will commence on the lease in the coming days, and it will start with a meeting between" Acting City Manager Dick Bowers and RSE, the ownership group headed by George Gosbee and Anthony LeBlanc that has a Coyotes purchase agreement with the NHL, "as soon as it can be scheduled." That meeting will "help form the structure of what an arena lease would look like, and it will be up to the city and RSE to reach such an agreement." The NHL "essentially handed off responsibilities after Tuesday’s meetings and has no scheduled plans to be further involved in the negotiations, other than in a support role." At issue still is the "cost of managing the arena." The city earlier this spring "sought bids from management firms interested in operating the arena." The deadline for submission of those bids "is Friday for both Coyotes owners and non-Coyotes owners." The city has $6M "budgeted annually, while RSE is believed to be seeking between" $13-15M annually (FOXSPORTSARIZONA.com, 5/28). In Phoenix, Paul Giblin reports NHL execs yesterday told Glendale officials that they will "keep the team in Arizona, provided they can agree to a deal concerning Jobing.com Arena." Both sides have "just a few weeks to reach a decision to meet their own internal target dates." NHL execs are "nearing important milestones, in late June, to release the 2013-14 season schedule." Knowing where the Coyotes will play next season "would ease that process." Glendale officials are "working to complete the municipal budget for fiscal 2014, which begins July 1." RSE has to "complete the purchase of the team from the NHL." NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly declined to "specify the price of the pending sale" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 5/29).
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