Former Arizona Coyotes team arrives in Salt Lake City for the NHL Utah event

Apr 24, 2024, 9:00 PM | Updated: May 12, 2024, 9:27 am

The former Arizona Coyotes arrive in Salt Lake City for the first time....

Clayton Keller of the yet-to-be-named Utah NHL hockey team speaks as the team is introduced during a welcome event Wednesday, April 24, 2024, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

The former Arizona Coyotes team arrived in Salt Lake City and attended the NHL in Utah event at the Delta Center on Wednesday.

This was the first time they had been in Utah since the announcement of the team’s sale and relocation from Arizona.

New owners Ryan and Ashley Smith hosted the event for the team as fans packed the arena in excitement of the arrival of the team and the NHL to Utah.

Smith thanked the fans as he greeted the crowd and announced the fans in Utah would have a part in choosing the name for the team next season.

“None of this happens without you,” Smith said to the crowd. “This is a community asset, a community team and everybody is going to have a part of it.”

General manager Bill Armstrong greeted the fans at the event and thanked the crowd for their support of the team.

“These guys are some of the toughest human beings you’ll meet for what they’ve gone through,” Armstrong said. “I know what it is like for them when they see you and see you cheer like that. You have no idea what that means to us.”


Head coach Andre Tourigny told the media before the event the experience of the past few weeks with the team was challenging.

“The process of the sale was complicated from everybody,” Tourigny said. “Both ownerships, past and present could not talk and the league would not talk as they were working on the business transaction [of the team].”

Tourigny said when he met with ownership, he and the team were excited about the move to Utah and the stability with the new ownership.

“From the moment Ryan and Ashley talked to us and how excited they were about having a team in Utah and they were talking about the growth in Utah, it got us excited,” Tourigny said. “We are excited and everybody is all in.”

Forward Clayton Keller explained his excitement of the team’s move to Utah.

“A lot went on the last couple weeks but we are super excited to be here,” Keller said. “Just seeing the youth hockey programs and lot of kids knowing our names, we couldn’t be more excited.”

Arizona Coyotes

Rendering of the Arizona Coyotes' Phoenix arena plan...

Arizona Sports

Phoenix mayor ‘does not support using taxpayer funds’ for Coyotes, any other sports arena

Phoenix mayor Kate Gallego does not support using taxpayer funds for the Coyotes' arena or any sports arena, a statement read.

4 days ago

Mullett Arena...

Associated Press

Frost? Yeti? Utah’s NHL team lists 20 options for new name after move from Arizona

Ownership of the NHL’s team in Utah has given fans 20 choices to vote on for the franchise’s new name.

12 days ago

Shane Doan and Josh Doan...

Arizona Sports

ESPN report details Coyotes’ move to Utah, Shane Doan’s departure

The Arizona Coyotes' relocation of the hockey operations department to a Utah-based group shocked fans and its own players alike.

20 days ago

Goaltender Connor Ingram...

Associated Press

Utah’s NHL team may use placeholder name for 1st season after move from Arizona

The NHL team moving from Arizona to Salt Lake City will be known as Utah, at least initially, until a long-term name is determined.

29 days ago

Tucson Roadrunners...

Alex Weiner

Mullett Arena? Stay in Tucson? Plan for the Coyotes’ AHL affiliate Roadrunners remains unclear

The path forward for the Tucson Roadrunners, the AHL affiliate of the Arizona Coyotes, remains unclear under owner Alex Meruelo.

1 month ago


Arizona Sports Video

Video: Goodbye, Arizona Coyotes

Arizona Sports' Jarrett Carlen pens a good-bye parody song to the now former Arizona Coyotes.

1 month ago

Former Arizona Coyotes team arrives in Salt Lake City for the NHL Utah event