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New year, new rumors for Coyotes’ future

The Phoenix Coyotes’ ownership drama has dragged on for
three seasons now, and with the calendar flipping to 2012,
a resolution to the issue seems no closer to fruition.

Last week, Mike Sunnucks of the Phoenix Business journal
penned a piece that indicates the recent announcement of
the NHL’s realignment plan keeps the door open for the
franchise to be relocated north of the border.

And on Tuesday, both Elliotte Friedman of CBC Sports in
Canada and Greg Wyshinski of Yahoo! Sports’
hockey blog
Puck Daddy
wrote pieces on possible landing spots for

Friedman lists four cities as possibilities: Seattle,
Quebec City, Las Vegas and Kansas City, while Wyshinski
focuses on the possibilities of the ‘Yotes packing up for
the Pacific Northwest.

There’s too much smoke with a Seattle bid to
ignore it as an option. It’s been a city interested in the
NHL on several occasions in the last 20 years. The Pacific
Northwest is seen as fertile ground for the League —
recall Paul Allen wanting to bring the Coyotes to Portland
in 2000.

Seattle-Tacoma is the 12th largest TV market in the U.S.
(right ahead of Phoenix). And, of course, the cross-border
rivalry with the Vancouver Canucks would make for some
lively home games.

Will any of these scenarios unfold? Who knows?

As both articles point out, the National Hockey League
has the right to being negotiating with other cities as of
January 1, but according to sources, that hasn’t happened

Once again, the rumors haven’t had
an adverse effect on the Coyotes’ on-ice performance.
Nearly at the midway point of the season, the Coyotes are
19-16-4 and their 42 points put them just three points out
of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

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