Pacific Division Winners Coyotes Greeted By Hundreds Of Their Fans

On Saturday night after the Coyote beat the Wild and secured the Pacific Division title, Tyson Nash sent out a tweet asking fans to come and meet the team plane. He was kind enough to give the address and time of arrival. That started a chain of electronic contacts that led to hundreds turning out to cheer on our team. 97 points and a title when no one but the hardest of hard core fans thought it was possible. The Coyotes needed this. The coaches, trainers, security, equipment managers, everyone needed to see what Tyson’s tweet stirred up.

We arrived at 10:30 pm to about 50 fans at Cutter Aviation. Within a few minutes, it was over one hundred. Someone from the Coyotes was handing out t-shirts, stickers, window flags. Everyone was happy, had their jerseys and signs on hand. The chants of Let’s Go Coyotes and Here We Go Coyotes rang out in contrast to the runway sounds. People were talking about their favorite moments. Doan’s hat trick, Ray getting 1000 points, Derek reaching the 1000 game mark. What we want to see (2nd round of the playoffs, Smitty getting an empty netter). What we need (an owner in Greg Jamison who knows hockey).

Channel 12 sent a video camerawoman. She did several stand up interviews, took lots of shots. ABC 15 sent out Craig Fouhy. It was good to see someone from the sports department at the media did attend this event. The crowd was well over 300 when we were told the plane was 18 minutes out. No one jockeyed for position, no one crowded out their fellow fans. It was a beautiful time talking to Bob, Anthony and Avery, Zac. Seeing members of the Booster Club in attendance. Lots of kids. And dogs. A very special dog named Louie stole the show. He was getting more hugs and kisses from women than Taylor Pyatt at a kissing booth.

Then the plane pulled up. And the fans went wild. Signs in the air, cheering and songs filled the night air. When the stairs came down, it was game on. Yellling player names, chanting Let’s Go Coyotes. Guys like Gilbert Brule and David Schlemko pumped up the crowd. Shane worked the fence line, shaking hands with the biggest smile on this face. Even Dave Tippett smiled. We got Tip to smile. I hope someone has a picture of that. Tyson and Todd Walsh were shocked at the crowd size. What made it perfect was that the players were not told of this by security. They had no idea until the plane taxied over to the hangar and they could see and hear us.

As the players left, horns were tooting as we were howling. It was a very special moment that we will treasure.

Tags: Phoenix Coyotes Shane Doan Tyson Nash

  • ZachFlahive

    This was without a doubt the thing that our boys needed to see. For them to see a group of die hard Coyotes fans lined up at midnight on Easter morning, has to put energy in their game. For a town that has no fans, that was truly remarkable for everyone to show up on such a short notice.

  • Yotes2012

    This would have almost caused me to join twitter…had I known…I might have gone too.  “The airport is too far away to drive…”  Let’s go ‘Yotes!  Go Pack Go!!!

  • gorsk11

    Great Article Jack!  It was unreal.  What a great turn out.  Typical Shane Doan, coming over and shaking hands with the fans.  Yandle whooping it up!  I’m glad the guys team enjoyed it.  I even got a thumbs up from Don Maloney.  Who would have thought we’d pull out a division champinship.  Can’t wait for Thursday to get here.  Here come the Hawks!  Go Coyotes!!!
    Keep up the good work.  Bob

  • DAGarhart

     This town has fans.  Most of them fair weather, but it has fans. 
    Let the bandwagon fans join! The more that join, the more money that gets pumped into OUR team!

  • ZachFlahive

     @DAGarhart I usually put a hint of sarcasm about no fans in stories like these. But the Band Wagon has already started. I lost count of how many Coyotes jersies I saw today. trying to talk hockey with them was the hard part…

  • DAGarhart

     I understand that 100%.  It seems like the only player they know is Doan, and may reference Smith, because of all the articles written about him.  But whatever it takes to get them interested in Hockey and learning the game.  The more interest that gets generated in the playoffs, the better the team will do IF they stay!  This town is capable of being a hockey town.  It will take us fans to help convert people too.  Help people learn the game.  I constantly was taking people to the games to get them into hockey.  Now they love the game and are looking to get season tickets.  But a deap playoff run will help that explode!
    GO YOTES!  HOWL!!!

  • DAGarhart

    I just wish I could have gone.  But I was in Cottonwood and my wife basically said that it was family time and I needed to stay at the in-laws house. (Happy Wife, Happy Life!!)  lol!
    Besides, she lets me be a sports fan and get my season tickets to the various sports in AZ.   Call me AZSPORTZFAN on twitter!  Anyway!  HOWL!  This will be awesome!  Time to scalp the Blackhawks!

  • ZachFlahive

     @DAGarhart If you look at attendance in previous years, we had a really great turnout, even through the Gretzky era. Pittsburgh had a really bad average, but they said it was because they didnt want to see a losing team. Hell, when the Yotes were playing bad, we still averaged more than them. The bankruptcy is what hurt it.

  • DAGarhart

     Zach.  I agree with you…  Gretzkey was good for attendance, he was a great player, but terrible coach.  The bankruptcy killed us.  People do not like the unknown.  They do not want to get behind a team and have them go away.  Hockey in Phoenix/Arizona is at what I call the tipping point.
    Basically, it could go either way.  With all the clubs that have started since the Coyotes have arrived/started here, it would be sad to see the NHL team leave.  All 3 state colleges have hockey organizations and there are all sorts of youth leagues.  Fact is we are close to seeing one of our own in the NHL.  Once that happens, someone from a local state college, the tipping point will tip in the favor of the Coyotes!

  • bigdaddyjack

    To DAGarhart, you have to keep the wife happy. I understand. Just make sure you are out there flying the flag. Wear your hat, wear a jersey to work on Thursday if you can. Get a Coyote window sticker on you car. 
    Gorks11, I truly appreiate you taking the time to register and comment on this. 
    Zachflahive, put your site address in here so we all can read it. We must build our own nation.
    It takes 3 generations to build a solid fan base. First generation still roots for the team from where they moved. Their kids get indoctrinated with that fandom but will lean toward the home team. 3rd generation goes to the home team games, sees them on tv. Reads about them on the internet. That is where we are now with the Coyotes. 
    Guys, thanks for commenting on this article. I appreciate it.
    We’ve been through alot the past few years. This is our time and a team and as a fan. 
    Here we go Coyotes, Here We Go!