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ASU and NHL's Arizona Coyotes agree to share new multi-purpose arena

The Arizona Board of Regents approved an increase of funding for the venue, with the Coyotes paying roughly $20 million to fund modifications


ASU's new multi-purpose arena under-construction on Thursday, Feb. 10, 2022 in Tempe.

The Arizona Coyotes and ASU reached an agreement to share the University's new multi-purpose arena through at least 2025, the team announced Thursday.

The announcement came after the Arizona Board of Regents approved additional funding for modifications to the arena in a board meeting the same day.

The Coyotes agreed to pay for roughly $20 million worth of renovations to the arena, which includes NHL-quality dressing rooms, training areas, equipment rooms, nutrition stations, coaches' offices, team storage areas, fitness areas, ice plant equipment, broadcasting infrastructure and more.

ABOR originally approved the proposal for the multi-purpose arena in November 2020 at a cost of $115 million. The board approved an increased cost of $134.7 million Thursday.

READ MORE: ABOR approves new $115-million multi-purpose arena for ASU sports programs

ASU chief financial officer Morgan Olsen said in the meeting the 5,000-seat arena, which will host the University's gymnastics and wrestling teams, is scheduled to be completed in October.

"We are pleased to help the Coyotes by providing a temporary home while their new arena is built," Olsen said in a statement. "We are beyond excited to open this wonderful new ASU arena, and this agreement just makes it even more special."

Olsen said the Coyotes approached ASU in December 2021 to discuss a possible arrangement for the team to play in the new arena. The city of Glendale told the Coyotes in August it would end the team's lease to use Gila River Arena, which has served as the team's home since 2003.

"We are thrilled that we have arranged to play our home games in Arizona State University's new multipurpose arena starting next season," Coyotes President and CEO Xavier A. Gutierrez said in a statement. "This will be an incredible, intimate and exciting fan experience in a state-of-the-art new arena in a fantastic location in the heart of Tempe."

The Coyotes submitted a proposal to the city of Tempe in September 2021 to build a $1.7 billion arena and entertainment district, but it reportedly does not have enough votes from the city council to approve the project, according to GoPHNX.

ASU hockey will be ending its long tenure at its home rink, Oceanside Arena, when the multi-purpose arena is complete. Oceanside Arena has served as the home for ASU men's hockey since 1979 when it was a club team.

Olsen said in the meeting the modifications will help support hosting potential NCAA events, such as regional tournaments for hockey and gymnastics.

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman thanked ASU for the agreement and, on Feb. 4 said the Coyotes will be "fine, better than fine" once they have found a permanent home. 

"The National Hockey League thanks Arizona State University for its support of the Coyotes during this transition period and for what will be just its latest major commitment to growing our game in the Valley," Bettman said in a statement.

Jeffrey Horst contributed to the reporting of this article. 

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