Phoenix Coyotes- What a Season!

by Lavine Team on May 27, 2012

Phoenix Coyotes Hockey The Arizona Coyotes play NHL hockey at the Gila River Arena, a part of the Westgate Entertainment District  out in the west valley of the Greater Phoenix Real Estate area. They moved here from Winnipeg in 1996 and have been owned by the NHL for the last 3 seasons since the former ownership went bankrupt in 2009. The future of the team since then has been up in the air while the League pursued new ownership that would keep the team in Phoenix.

Since the exit of coach Wayne Gretzky, the team has been coached by Dave Tippett. He has assembled and guided a great bunch of players with true team spirit and relentless effort. They have been in the playoffs for 3 consecutive seasons and this year nearly went all the way. Every one in town is so very proud of their accomplishments!

What a season!! They were struggling in January to finish within the top 8 and rallied to win 11 of 12 games in February. They continued their push and maintained a playoff qualifying position right through the remainder of the season and then won their last game against Minnesota to claim the Pacific Division Title for the first time in team history ( Winnipeg & Phoenix history). They were seeded #3 in the conference standings. Also for the first time in the Phoenix team history they advanced beyond the first round by defeating the Chicago Blackhawks 4 games to 2 with 5 out of 6 games going to nerve wrenching overtime. Then they had a seemingly easier time advancing to the conference final by defeating the Nashville Predators 4 games to 1.

They struggled the first 2 games against the LA Kings but rallied to win game 3 and then pushed it to overtime in game 4 back home only to lose it in the dying minutes of overtime…..a real heart breaker….it could have gone either way and then who knows what would have happened with the additional momentum & confidence that a victory would have brought!

A great thing happened in the city with it’s attitude towards hockey along the way. Hockey being played at youth level has increased by about 34% since last year and last year had improved since the year before. The more the exposure, the more the city youth is getting in to this sport that Canadians hold dear to their hearts. Local skating venues are more active and minor league play has gained popularity. That’s how it all starts! That feeling is definitely starting to spread here. The city will always support a winning team and with 3 great seasons under their belt the local media exposure has been phenomenal. The whole valley was Coyote Crazy during the playoffs!

Typically it is during the winter months when there are so many visitors from Canada, the upper mid-western states & other colder climates that have been filling many of the seats at the arena. Sure, there is a good loyal fan base  that have supported the team but not enough of them to keep the franchise viable with the poorest average attendance in the league at 11000 per game. What was so heartwarming was that the arena was jam packed for the Nashville Predators series and by May most of the winter visitors are long gone. It was the locals who filled the stands. For the Chicago series, many winter guests have gone home too but there are many people that live here that originally came from Chicago or nearby centers that came out to cheer on the Blackhawks but that is not the case with a Nashville contingency…these were almost all locals out to cheer on their team.

The deal to purchase the Phoenix Coyotes is still ongoing….stay tuned!!

Incidentally 24 players from the team’s roster are Canadian!!

Many vacation home seekers have been selecting their house or condo location preferences to have close proximity to both the arena and the football stadium at Westgate City Center. This wonderful entertainment district was built for a Superbowl held in 2008 and the valley is left with a great place to dine, shop, tailgate, watch sports and movies. A new outlet mall is currently under construction in the NW corner of the development.  Click here for a video on Westgate City Center.

The nearby communities of Glendale, Peoria, Avondale, Goodyear, Litchfield Park, Surprise and Buckeye among others provide for great home options in the Greater Phoenix Real Estate area. The Lavine Team has vast experience within all of these communities and beyond to the east valley where many choose to situate regardless of proximity.

Search for Greater Phoenix MLS Listings-homes for sale


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