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NHL’s Coyotes seal new arena naming rights partner

The National Hockey League’s Arizona Coyotes has sealed a nine-year deal for Gila River Casinos to become the new naming rights partner of the ice hockey franchise’s home arena.

The deal, if it is approved by the Glendale City Council during its meeting on September 9, will run from 2014-15 to 2022-23. The agreement marks the first such naming rights deal featuring a federally recognised tribe with a major league sports venue in North America. Financial details of the contract have not been disclosed.

The venue, which had been called Jobing.com Arena, will be known as Gila River Arena. The Gila River Indian Community and Gila River Casinos have been long-term commercial partners of the team, which changed its name from the Phoenix Coyotes to Arizona Coyotes earlier this year.

“Like the Coyotes, the Gila River Indian Community prides themselves on their commitment to business excellence and to their community,” Coyotes co-owner, president and chief executive Anthony LeBlanc said. “Pending Glendale City Council approval, we are looking forward to having Gila River’s prestigious and reputable name associated with our great hockey team and our state-of-the-art arena. This will be a great fit for both the Coyotes and Gila River Casinos.”

Deborah Griffin, president of Gila Casinos’ board of directors, added: “Gila River Casinos places a great deal of importance on being a good partner in the communities we work and live in, and this partnership provides the perfect opportunity to support long-term economic growth and development to the city of Glendale and the state of Arizona.”