ARIZONA COYOTES

Andrew Barroway exploring buying out Coyotes’ minority owners

Mar 27, 2017, 3:15 PM | Updated: Mar 28, 2017, 11:26 am
New Arizona Coyotes majority owner Andrew Barroway, right, fist pumps team members, including Mikke...
New Arizona Coyotes majority owner Andrew Barroway, right, fist pumps team members, including Mikkel Boedker (89), of Denmark, after Barroway dropped the ceremonial first puck prior to an NHL hockey game against the Columbus Blue Jackets Saturday, Jan. 3, 2015, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

GLENDALE, Ariz. — The Coyotes minority owners have given majority owner Andrew Barroway the option of buying them out by early summer, multiple sources have confirmed.

Barroway is exploring bringing in new partners to raise the money necessary to do so, with Tampa Bay Rays minority owner Randy Frankel mentioned as a possibility in a newly constructed ownership group.

Two sources said the deadline for that purchase is June 6, but another said that date is approximate, not exact, without providing further information. If Barroway were unsuccessful in his bid to buy out the other owners, it’s unclear if the minority owners would then have the option of buying out Barroway’s majority share in the team.

It is possible none of the scenarios pans out.

It is unclear what plans a newly configured ownership group would have for the team, which has been in search of a long-term arena solution for nearly two years. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman wrote a letter to the Arizona State Legislature earlier this month informing them that: “The Arizona Coyotes must have a new arena location to succeed. The Coyotes cannot and will not remain in Glendale.”

Bettman has steadfastly asserted that the team will remain in Arizona as long as it has arena options, and Bettman still believes the team has arena options.

“We are not giving up on the Coyotes in the greater Phoenix area,” he said after the GM meetings in Boca Raton, Fla., earlier this month. “The fact that the Coyotes are even having discussions about moving out of Glendale is because the city of Glendale chose to terminate the long-term agreement they had with the team. Had they not terminated that agreement, we wouldn’t be having this discussion. The Coyotes are looking at the numerous options they have in the Valley, and we expect one of them to go to fruition.”

A bill to create a special tax district to help fund the construction of an arena has stalled in the Legislature due to a lack of support. That would seem to remove any options involving a municipality unless reworked legislation were introduced at a later date, but a group that wants to build a 20,000-seat arena on Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community land remains interested in negotiating with the team. The arena would be privately funded, with no taxpayer dollars or approval by the Arizona State Legislature required.

The Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community is a sovereign tribe.

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