The Phoenix Coyotes announced this week that the NHL team plans to change its name to the Arizona Coyotes starting next season.
The team unveiled the name change Wednesday night on Twitter.
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"We are very excited to announce that our franchise name will change to Arizona Coyotes for the start of the 2014-15 NHL season," team co-owner, president, and CEO Anthony LeBlanc said in a statement on the team's website
. "Becoming the Arizona Coyotes makes sense for us since we play our games in Glendale and the city is such a great partner of ours. We also want to be recognized as not just the hockey team for Glendale or Phoenix, but the team for the entire state of Arizona and the Southwest. We hope that the name ‘Arizona’ will encourage more fans from all over the state, not just the valley, to embrace and support our team."
The Coyotes moved to Phoenix from Winnipeg in 1996 and played in the city until 2003 when it moved to Jobing.com Arena in Glendale, Ariz. The team is currently in the running for the playoffs and sits at ninth place in the Western Conference standings.
Hockey fans' reaction to the name change was mixed:
The Coyotes take on the Buffalo Sabres Thursday night in Phoenix.
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