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No lockout for Coyotes at Gila River Arena

Phoenix CoyotesAfter a payment on Gila River Arena rent puts the team current until the end of the year, the city of Glendale won’t lock out the Arizona Coyotes for the rest of the NHL season if the team stays current on payments.

The city issued a statement reporting that the team made a payment of $923,388.27 toward Gila River Arena rent to arena manager ASM Global, bringing the team current through the end of 2021. In addition, the cleared up all past due taxes with the Arizona Department of Revenue, removing the sales tax lien placed on the team on Dec. 3, 2021.

“With the financial obligations of the team fulfilled through the end of 2021, the City will allow the team to continue to operate under its current use agreement. Assuming the Coyotes keep current on rent and associated charges, the team can continue to use the Arena and facilities until the expiration of the agreement on June 30th, 2022,” according to the city statement.

The payments clear up a cloud hanging over the team’s head, but it’s short-term relief, at best. The team still needs to find a home for the 2022-2023 and 2023-2024 seasons (at least) while finalizing a development plan for a new Tempe arena–a plan that’s receiving pushback from Sky Harbor Airport officials, who say the tallest buildings are too close to the airport. (However, at the end of the day the FAA is the final arbiter of whether such development impinges on airport operations.)

RELATED STORIES: Chase Field in play as temp Coyotes home?; Coyotes, Glendale continue sparring over Gila River Arena finances; Phoenix: New Tempe arena could impact Sky Harbor; Proposed Arizona Coyotes arena core of $1.7B Tempe development; Coyotes Tempe arena bid confirmedWith loss of Glendale lease, where will Coyotes next play?; New Coyotes Tempe arena on tap?; Job #1 for Gutierrez: New Coyotes arenaGutierrez new Arizona Coyotes president/CEO

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