Wednesday, May 29, 2024

A last makes a first

 I don't think I've even seen a card issued for a team's LAST game. Of course, that makes sense because teams don't fail very often, thankfully. The last NHL team to fold was before I was even born, until, perhaps, this year. 

The Arizona Coyotes have been poorly managed for longer than I've been in the sport. Just a couple of years ago they got locked out of their arena for not paying the rental bill, for example. For the past two seasons, they have been playing out of a college arena, which led to the road locker room being a tent in the parking lot. Yeah, just two of the more extreme examples, but their biggest problem is not having an arena capable of hosting major league hockey. 

So they are probably done. Probably? Well, the current owner, IF he can get a piece of land, AND completely build a new arena ready for play by the 2028-29 season, will get the Coyotes restarted. Those are pretty big ifs and I am somewhat dubious it will happen. 

For now, the contracts of all the players and the hockey operations have been sold to the new Utah NHL franchise, which will debut next year without a name. I will be calling them the CoyUties myself. 

I watched the last Coyotes game on Center Ice. It has never been my favorite team but watching the last game made me sad, for the players, the fans, the team support staff and was the saddest broadcast I've ever seen. 

Now Topps has issued a card for the last game in the Topps Now set. 

This photo was taken at the conclusion of the game when all the players came out to salute the fans. You can tell by the faces visible and the body language that it was not a particularly happy moment for them, despite blowing out the Oilers. It was truly the end of that era. 

I'll be curious to see what the future holds- both for the new Utah team that will be made up of former Coyotes, but especially to see whether the Coyotes themselves can be restarted. Only time will tell.


  1. I, too, will now be calling them the CoyUties, great name!

  2. As an A's fan... I can kinda understand what Coyotes fans are going through. Although it's a sad moment in franchise history, I'm glad Topps captured it on a card. I'm hoping they do the same when the A's play at the Coliseum for the last time in September.

  3. Although I'm not much of a hockey fan and only passed through Arizona once, I feel for the Coyotes fans. I also like the "CoyUties" name. Great post!

  4. That was such a sad day for them. I like the name you picked!