The Arizona Coyotes might be forced to vacate Gila River Arena sooner than expected. According to multiple reports, the Coyotes were informed by the city of Glendale that the franchise is facing eviction due to unpaid bills.
ESPN reports that the Coyotes amassed a debt of $1.3 million in state and municipal taxes on top of an unconfirmed amount for arena-related bills. The city of Glendale is believed to be owed around $250,000 in unpaid taxes alone.
The Coyotes now have a deadline until December 20th to pay what they owe, or the team won’t be able to access their arena anymore, according to The Athletic.
The issue has been acknowledged by the franchise through a statement issued on Wednesday in which the Coyotes said that the unpaid bills were a “result of an unfortunate human error.”
“We will make sure by tomorrow morning, the Arizona Coyotes are current on all of our bills and owe no state or local taxes whatsoever,” the statement continued. “And we will take immediate steps to ensure nothing like this can ever possibly happen again.”
The Arizona Coyotes were already set to leave the Gil River Arena when their lease expires following the 2021-22 NHL season. The Coyotes were interested in continuing to play in Glendale in 2022-23, but the city council opted against giving them a new lease.
It was previously reported that Coyotes wish to remain in Arizona and are considering temporary solutions while focusing on building their own arena.