GLENDALE, Ariz. – The president of the Phoenix Coyotes says the NHL has not assumed control of the cash-strapped hockey club.
Glendale city manager Ed Beasley told The Arizona Republic that the league is running the team and has promised to reimburse the city for parking fees and security costs at Jobing.com Arena, which is located in Glendale.
But Coyotes president Doug Moss said Thursday that team officials remain in control of the franchise.
“The bottom line is the NHL is not in control,” Moss told The Associated Press. “It’s not running the franchise.
“To say they’ve taken control – we’re having conversations with the league. (General manager) Donnie Maloney is running the draft. I’m reporting to (owner) Jerry Moyes. It’s business as usual.”
The league declined comment on the report when contacted by The Canadian Press.
The NHL Players’ Association said the report was an NHL matter, with executive director Paul Kelly offering only that “we have received no indication from the league that the Coyotes may not be playing in Phoenix next season.”
Kelly in the past has said that the union is monitoring the situation in Phoenix and that the NHL should look to Canada first if a team needs to relocate.
Beasley told the Republic the league started running the team around the time a rent payment was made in late February. The city and the league are working together and he expects all payments to be made in full, he added.
A call to Beasley was not immediately returned to The Canadian Press.
According to Glendale city records, the Coyotes stopped paying the city rent, parking fees and most of its security costs at the arena in August.
Moss declined to discuss specific financial details but added, “We’re up to date on the lease.”
-With files from The Associated Press