The Arizona Coyotes have been sold. Again.
Despite speculation otherwise, Andrew Barroway has completed his purchase of the Arizona franchise and now owns a majority stake in the club. Barroway claims ownership to 51 percent of the Coyotes after investing $152.5 million into the operation. The NHL Board of Governors have approved the sale thus finalizing the deal.
IceArizona -- the company that purchased the Coyotes last year for $170 million -- came to an agreement with Barroway in October that would allow him to enter the organization as controlling governor. The last step to finalizing this process involved the Board of Governors approving the deal, which was expected to occur at their meetings in Boca Raton in early December.
However, it was revealed at the meetings that the matter would not be reviewed or voted upon. This, in addition to reports from the weekend prior, led to rampant speculation that Barroway was on the verge of backing out of the deal. Casey Gagnon of Arizona Sports Hub reports that the deal was in serious jeopardy several weeks ago. This could be why the agreement wasn't voted upon at the Board of Governors meeting as originally expected. Gagnon cites a league source and a source close to Barroway who both confirmed that Commissioner Gary Bettman knew the deal was in trouble at the Boca Raton meetings, but did not want to create a panic.
Bettman was quoted at the time as saying that an extensive amount of paperwork was holding up the process, via ESPN:
"A fair amount of the documentation underlying the transaction we only got the end of last week," explained Bettman. "The documentation has to be reviewed, we have to finish our due diligence, there has to be an interview.
"It would be nice for a whole host of reasons to get it done by the end of the year. With the holidays coming up, that may be an achievable result, it may not. But all of the parties are interested in moving it along as quickly as they can, as are we. But we have a process that we go through, and we have to check all the boxes. But based on the timing of the documents having been signed, there are a lot of boxes we couldn't get to yet. But we'll get to them shortly."
Reports at the time indicated that GM Don Maloney had been instructed to shed salary cap commitments. The team has not done so at the time of this writing. Whatever the holdup was regarding the sale, it has apparently been settled.