Sen. John McCain encouraged by ownership news

May 9, 2012, 4:34 AM | Updated: 6:12 am

Senator John McCain is encouraged about the potential sale of the Phoenix Coyotes to former San Jose Sharks owner Greg Jamison after listening to NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.

“I think he’s cautious,” McCain told Arizona Sports 620’s Doug and Wolf Tuesday. “I think he’s guardedly optimistic but he knows that there are a number of things that have to happen.”

McCain has tangled with the Goldwater Institute, a private watchdog group, who stalled past deals from going through, so he knows the sale’s completion will not be easy.

“I’ve been in kind of a dispute, a profound difference of viewpoint with [Goldwater Institute] over the Coyotes for a long time,” McCain said. “All I can say is that they should understand that this team has excited the entire Valley, in fact the entire state.”

While McCain and Coyotes nation wait to hear if the deal will be finalized, reports on the team’s potential new owner are glowing.

“I don’t know this guy Jamison but I do know his record and everything I hear about his record at San Jose is that he’s a fine and upstanding guy,” McCain stated.

McCain said the Coyotes emergence this postseason has sparked a struggling economy on the west side and has ignited an increasingly energetic fan base.

“This is something we are all very, very proud of,” McCain said of the Coyotes success. “You can’t put dollars and cents on how proud we are of this blue collar team.

“There’s an intangible associated with excitement and pride and we have excitement and pride of this hockey team.”

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Sen. John McCain encouraged by ownership news