Glendale to vote on Coyotes lease tonight


In the latest chapter of the never-ending Phoenix Coyotes ownership saga (we believe it’s chapter 13,349), the City of Glendale will vote this evening on a 20-year lease with prospective team owner Greg Jamison.

The lease is a controversial one in that it calls for the cash-strapped municipality to pay Jamision in the neighborhood of $15 million a year to manage the city-owned Arena.

Some say it’s nothing but a subsidy and that the arena could be managed for considerably less.

The counterargument is that it’s the only way to keep the Coyotes from moving and that, with the potential loss of jobs and indirect business taxes, things would be worse for the city without the NHL franchise.

The vote’s outcome could come down to city councilor Yvonne Knaack, who didn’t indicate last week which way she was leaning.

It’s also worth noting that city manager Horatio Skeete no longer supports the lease, even though he’s the one who negotiated it with Jamison.

Of course, even if the lease is approved by city council, Jamison would still need to close on the deal. Last week, he told the Arizona Republic that his group would “move as quickly as we possibly can” should the vote go its way.

There’s also the specter of the Goldwater Institute, the taxpayer watchdog group that may challenge the lease, which many have called a subsidy, in court.

GM says Blue Jackets are ‘off the rails’ right now

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On Monday, PHT discussed the Columbus Blue Jackets’ troubling start, even if it felt like it may be too early to raise concerns.

Apparently Blue Jackets management is a little shaken by the second 0-3-0 start in franchise history, however.

Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen shared his shock and dismay with the Columbus Dispatch’s Aaron Portzline on Tuesday.

“I’m surprised how, in just five days, we’ve gone from a very confident group to something that’s the opposite of that,” Kekalainen told The Dispatch on Tuesday. “Our confidence, our game … it’s off the rails right now.

Maybe losing to the Buffalo Sabres stings a little bit extra?

Kekalainen said “there’s no excuse for how we played in Buffalo,” pointing out that every team in the NHL is a “good team.”

Indeed, just about every squad boasts some dangerous weapons if they catch an opponent sleeping.

Portzline goes deeper on Columbus’ recent history of stumbling out of the gate, but consider the foreboding stretch coming up.

Next four games: Three out of four at home
Eight games following that: Seven out of eight on the road.

As you can see, winter is coming for Columbus, so they best get things together. All things considered, this is the right time for a wake-up call.

For bonus chuckles, here’s a photo of Kekalainen on a railing.

via AP

Personal reasons: No Ovechkin for Caps tonight

Alex Ovechkin
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Alex Ovechkin won’t play for the Washington Capitals on Tuesday because of personal reasons, the team confirmed.

He entered the building considerably later than usual, but his presence at least opened the door for the possibility of No. 8 suiting up against the San Jose Sharks.

Instead, the Capitals will face the hot-starting Sharks without Ovechkin (personal reasons) and Nicklas Backstrom (injury).

That’s a tall order, yet it’s also an opportunity for Barry Trotz to prove his system is a difference-maker … and that the Capitals have the young players to take up the mantle when the big stars are out

This is how Washington’s forward lines may look tonight:

No, the Capitals have not shared details regarding what his “personal reasons” might be, by the way.