Fight for Phoenix Hockey Team Turns Coyote Ugly

Martin AverySenior Writer IMay 9, 2009

DETROIT - FEBRUARY 7:   Shane Doan #19 of the Phoenix Coyotes skates against the Detroit Red Wings during their NHL game at Joe Louis Arena February 7, 2007 in Detroit, Michigan. The Red Wings beat the Coyotes 4-2.(Photo By Dave Sandford/Getty Images)

The funniest piece on the controversy over the Phoenix Coyotes possible move from Arizona to Ontario to play in Hamilton has to be Bob Young's article in the Arizona Republic.

In his column titled The Heat Index, he predicts it's going to get "Coyote Ugly".

It's an allusion to the movie called Coyote Ugly, a romantic comedy/drama based on the Coyote Ugly Saloon, an American drinking establishment and the namesake of a national chain of bars. The movie was popular about nine years ago.

According to the Urban Dictionary, "coyote ugly" describes a "situation encountered after a night of consuming alcohol whereby a person, usually male, wakes the next morning in a strange bed with a sexual partner from the previous evening who is completely physically undesirable and sleeping on the man's arm. The hapless male would rather gnaw off his own arm than wake the woman and have to face the ills of his intoxicated choices the previous evening. Originating from a phenomena whereby a coyote captured in a jaw trap will chew off its own leg to escape certain death. "

Young says, "That's really what's happening here, because it appears the owner of our local hockey team is willing to gnaw off his own arm rather than confront the ugly reality of earlier decisions made, perhaps, while in some sort of stupor."

Young says the situation promises to be quite a soap opera and even goes so far as to identify the plot and the characters.

The plot: Will the Phoenix Coyotes remain the Desert Dogs? "Or will we come to know them as the Deserting Dogs?"

The players:

He calls Gary Bettman "The Count", claiming the NHL commissioner bears a striking resemblance to the 'Sesame Street' vampire character of that name.

Young explains that "Many hockey fans north of the U.S. border consider him a blood-sucking villain because he has allowed free movement of NHL franchises from Canada into the U.S. but allegedly has blocked the potential return of teams to the Great White North."

He calls Jim Balsillie "The Black(Berry) Knight", the arch-nemesis of The Count.

Jerry Moyes is "The Trucker", he says, as the team's owner "made a fortune with Swift Transportation, but has lost a couple hundred million on a not-so-swift investment in the Coyotes."

He says the soap opera also stars Wayne Gretzky, aka "The Great One", as the face of the franchise, who "gave the team credibility but it never transferred to results on the ice."

He points out Shane Doan, aka "Captain Coyote", may have the unusual distinction of playing in three different NHL cities—without ever having been traded and without leaving as a free agent as he was a member of the Winnipeg Jets, which became the Phoenix Coyotes, and now he may land up north.

Also, Young adds to the growing list of the proposed names for the team, after arriving in Hamilton, suggesting "the Golden Horseshoes". (Explanation: They call the region of southern Ontario around the western end of Lake Ontario "The Golden Horseshoe.").

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You can read the entire article online on AZCentral.com at www.azcentral.com/sports/coyotes.

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