Earlier today Craig Morgan reported that it is likely the Arizona Coyotes will have their AHL team in Tucson next year, where they will play in a renovated Tucson Convention Center. Although the TCC has received some renovations in recent years there is still much to be done with the back offices that would require more attention.
It has long been a complaint among Western Conference teams that their AHL affiliates are largely across the country, making call-ups more difficult. It wasn't until last year that the AHL formed a Pacific Division, with five teams in Southern California.
The Coyotes' plan to move their AHL affiliate to Arizona also coincides with the Coyotes plan to grow the sport throughout Arizona. This past year the Coyotes increased their relationship with Arizona State University's soon to be fully NCAA hockey team and hosted a matchup and the team hosted a matchup between ASU and U of A hockey at Gila River Arena on October 3rd, in addition to hosting the Desert Hockey Classic involving Yale, Michigan Tech, and the University of Connecticut.
If the Coyotes do end up wanting to move a team to Tucson they would be required to purchase an AHL team which Craig Morgan reports could be in the final stages. However the identity of the team was not disclosed. Currently the Coyotes have a multi-year agreement with the Springfield Falcons, but it remains to be seen if that is the club in play.