Phoenix Coyotes under the gun to get deal done

Phoenix Coyotes fans cheer at Jobing.com Arena. (DARRYL WEBB/Reuters)

Phoenix Coyotes fans cheer at Jobing.com Arena. (DARRYL WEBB/Reuters)

BRUCE GARRIOCH, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:40 AM ET

NEW YORK - It's now or never for the Phoenix Coyotes.

Gary Bettman told reporters following Thursday's board of governors meeting if Glendale City Council doesn't approve the lease agreement with the Renaissance Sports and Entertainment Tuesday then the team will likely be moved.

Speaking after updating the governors during a lengthy five-hour session at the Westin Times Square, the NHL commissioner indicated the league would no longer prop up the Coyotes after four years of looking for an owner.

"We're anticipating or we're hoping that Glendale city council passes the proposed with the Renaissance group for the operation of the building and the club playing there going forward," Bettman said.

"That's an essential ingredient to this moving forward. I don't want to be more specific than I'm going to be but if the council doesn't approve it, so that this transaction can close, I don't think the Phoenix Coyotes will be playing there."

League sources say that several owners have told Bettman it's time to put up or shut up in Phoenix. They don't like the fact that not only did they have to fund losses during the 113-day lockout, they now have to dig in to keep the Coyotes afloat.


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