NHL

Utah Hockey Goalie Shares Message For Fans In Utah: I Am Excited

Apr 18, 2024, 3:15 PM | Updated: 3:47 pm

Connor Ingram Arizona Coyotes Utah NHL Hockey...

TEMPE, ARIZONA - JANUARY 09: Goaltender Connor Ingram #39 of the Arizona Coyotes in action during the NHL game at Mullett Arena on January 09, 2024 in Tempe, Arizona. The Coyotes defeated the Bruins 4-3 in overtime. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY – Goalie for the new Utah NHL franchise Connor Ingram spoke on the impact of relocation and excitement for the next chapter in Salt Lake City.

Ingram said that the uprooting process will be tough but he has faith in the future of the franchise with new ownership.

“These next couple of days we’ll get some answers and figure things out,” Ingram said. “I can’t speak for everyone but most of us are kind of soaking this in.”

@kslsportscom @Arizona Coyotes players Connor Ingram, Logan Cooley, and Josh Doan share their feelings on relocating to Utah. #Yotes #Coyotes #ArizonaCoyotes #NHL ♬ original sound – kslsportscom

Ingram has spent the last two seasons in Arizona.

After his first season in Nashville, Ingram found his footing with the Coyotes in 2022.

It’s a complicated process with a lot of emotions tied in but Ingram remains excited for the future.

“It’s exciting,” Ingram said. “Not to leave Arizona but to go somewhere new.”

In 77 games played over the last two seasons, Ingram recorded 2196 saves on 2,421 shots.

Last year, the Coyotes won 23 of the 44 games with Ingram in goal. He was tied for the most shutouts in the NHL last season with six.

Ingram looked back on past times he had been in Utah and said that he loves the area.

“I’m not going to lie, I really like Salt Lake City,” Ingram said. “We stop every year on the drive-in. I will miss Arizona but I’m excited for Salt Lake City. If you’re going to move, it’s a good place to go.”

League Approves New NHL Hockey Team In Utah

The NHL Board Of Governors unanimously approved the establishment of a new hockey franchise in Utah by Ryan and Ashley Smith and Smith Entertainment Group (SEG) using the assets of the Arizona Coyotes.

In addition, the board approved a future reactivation of a franchise in Arizona if certain conditions are met.

“Effective at closing, the approved transactions will result in the Coyotes’ franchise transferring the totality of its existing hockey assets – including its full Reserve List, roster of Players and draft picks and its Hockey Operations Department – to the Utah franchise,” read the press release from the National Hockey League.

The Utah franchise does not have a name yet… but Smith is committed to giving hockey fans in Utah a say.

 

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“I have a ton of faith in Utah. Utahns show up,” Smith told KSL Sports of his drive to bring an NHL team to Utah. “Everyone keeps telling us why we can’t, but if you want these things to happen, you have to take advantage of the moments.”

NHL To Utah

For hockey fans in Utah, this news feels like a long time coming after Smith announced his commitment and readiness to bring a franchise to Utah earlier this year.

“As everyone knows, Utah is a vibrant and thriving state, and we are thrilled to be a part of it,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said. “We are also delighted to welcome Ashley and Ryan Smith to the NHL family and know they will be great stewards of the game in Utah. We thank them for working so collaboratively with the League to resolve a complex situation in this unprecedented and beneficial way.”

In the press release, Ryan and Ashley Smith expressed a commitment to bring high-level hockey to the Salt Lake valley.

“We are honored to bring an NHL team to Utah and understand the responsibility we have as stewards of a new NHL franchise,” said the Smiths “This is a transformative day for our state and our fans. Our intention had always been to pursue an expansion team. Commissioner Bettman conceived and proposed an ingenious plan that would allow us to acquire an NHL franchise while also helping to address and remedy an immediate need of the NHL. When he approached us and asked us for help resolving this situation, we made the bold decision to introduce a new franchise in Utah, fully understanding that we are stepping up to do something in a time frame and way that has never been done before in professional sports under these circumstances.

“We are committed to building a Stanley Cup contending team and are thrilled to welcome incredible players, coaches, staff, and their families to Utah. Today is a great day for Utah, for hockey, and for building a legacy that will have a lasting impact for generations to come,” the Smiths continued.

Are you on Threads yet? Let’s connect, give us a follow @kslsports

Chandler Holt is a co-host for the Jazz Notes podcast and a Digital Sports Producer for KSLSports.com, specializing in all things basketball and football. Follow Chandler on Twitter @ChandlerHoltKSL or on Threads @chandlerho1t.

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Utah Hockey Goalie Shares Message For Fans In Utah: I Am Excited