Coyotes sold to development group

Richard Burke, who bought the National Hockey League's Winnipeg Jets and brought them to Arizona four years ago, has agreed to sell the Phoenix Coyotes to the developer building a new arena for the club.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, although several Arizona media outlets reported the selling price is $87 million.

The deal, which requires the approval of the NHL's Board of Governors, is expected to close by June 30.

The new owner, Ellman Cos., is already working on the $535 million redevelopment of a shopping mall in suburban Scottsdale that will include a new Coyotes arena.

Ellman would pay $10 million to Burke over time, his company and unnamed investors would pay $17 million and Societe General, the Coyotes' bank, would transfer a $60 million loan from Burke to Ellman.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman reportedly has been so determined to keep the franchise in Arizona that he rejected a proposal by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, owner of the National Basketball Association's Portland Trail Blazers and the National Football League's Seattle Seahawks, to buy the Coyotes and move the team to Portland, Oregon.

Burke has said he would have to sell the team to avoid continued and rising losses since the new facility wouldn't be ready by the time his lease on America West Arena in Phoenix expired. He has said he lost up to $10 million a year in the Phoenix center.

He had been elated last fall when voters approved public financing for part of the redevelopment that would include the 18,000-seat arena. But he wanted ground broken by New Year's, and demolition of mall buildings did not begin until March.

Burke and partner Steve Gluckstern paid $65 million for the Jets in 1995 and moved the franchise to Phoenix in 1996. Gluckstern left in 1998, selling his interest to Burke.

However, the view of about 4,300 of the Phoenix arena's 16,210 hockey seats is obstructed, and there are other revenue concerns.

Arts and Entertainment
tvThe C-Word, TV review
Arts and Entertainment
The Ridiculous Six has been produced by Adam Sandler, who also stars in it
filmNew controversy after nine Native American actors walked off set
Danny Jones was in the Wales squad for the 2013 World Cup
rugby leagueKeighley Cougars half-back was taken off after just four minutes
Life and Style
The original ZX Spectrum was simple to plug into your TV and get playing on
techThirty years on, the ZX Spectrum is back, after a fashion
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk