Brad Marchand Shades Coyotes over Low Attendance Amid ASU Arena Discussions

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 28, 2022

BOSTON, MA - DECEMBER 11: Brad Marchand #63 of the Boston Bruins skates with the puck against the Arizona Coyotes at the TD Garden on December 11, 2018 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Brian Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images)
Brian Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images

Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand had some sauce for the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday. 

Amid reports that the Coyotes were nearing an agreement with Arizona State University to play at the school's multipurpose facility—which will seat around 5,000 fans—while they finish construction on their own Tempe venue, Marchand took a shot at the organization:

Brad Marchand @Bmarch63

Well… the only way they get 5000 fans at their games now is if they give 4500 away for free so wouldn’t change much

Winnipeg's Canada Life Centre currently has the league's lowest capacity at 15,294. 

Marchand's burn wasn't as much of an exaggeration as you might think. Per Sportsnet, the Coyotes are currently averaging 11,575 fans per game at the Gila River Arena, the third lowest average attendance in the NHL. Only the Ottawa Senators and Buffalo Sabres have been worse. 

"As we have said many times, we are completely committed to building our future in Arizona," a Coyotes spokesperson said in an emailed statement to Sportsnet. "As part of that process, we are excited to be exploring some great temporary arena options here before we move in to a new permanent home in the Valley."

One of those options, apparently, will only host 5,000 fans. Not that Marchand thinks the Coyotes will need that many seats.