PHOENIX — The Phoenix Coyotes’ recent run through the Stanley Cup playoffs brought much-needed positive attention to the team in the Valley.
But many believe that if the team stays in Glendale, it must draw more fans from the Valley’s large Hispanic community in order to grow and survive.
Latino fans watched the games with interest at the Fiesta Grill, a sports bar near 16th and Roosevelt streets that caters to Hispanics.
Fans said they are confident that the Coyotes would do well if they tried to introduce hockey to more people in the Latino community.
“First of all, I think that they will have to get more players that Latin people can relate to,” said Herson Gallegos.
The Coyotes have a player who may be able to do that. Left wing Raffi Torres is Hispanic — of Peruvian and Mexican descent — and one of the team’s more popular players.
Some people say that the expense of hockey keeps Latinos from getting interested in the sport. Rito Florez doesn’t believe that.
“Hispanics do pay a lot of money to go see soccer,” he said. “Soccer tickets are very expensive, and yet you see the Brazilian and Hispanic people showing up there.”
Florez said he and his kids became Coyotes fans after they went to a game and found hockey to be exciting and fun.
Florez said the key to the Coyotes’ success could be making their games more accessible to the Hispanic community through radio and television.
He thinks that if the games were broadcast in Spanish — like the D-backs, Suns and Cardinals — there would be a big jump in interest in the Latino community.
- Arizona kids in crisis: How you can help
- 11 holiday classics for the ultimate movie marathon
- 2016 college football rivalry games you simply can't miss
- New treatment offers hope for migraine sufferers
- 11 stadiums to watch your favorite football team
- Shopping for a TV? Best models for 2016
- The new beer pairing guide for holiday foods
- Avoid this holiday plumbing disaster in your home
- 7 tips to avoid holiday weight gain
- New treatments mean better prostate cancer survival rates
- 5 of the scariest things found in drains
- 6 tips to create the best family movie night
- New bone marrow procedure holds promise for healing pain
- The best places to celebrate Fall in Phoenix
- Infamous athletes who did the most time for their crimes
- Diet, exercise and aspirin: 3 tools to fight colon cancer
- 2016 baseball highlights, bloopers and blunders
- See how CFOs really feel about business in the Valley
- The best television shows on the internet
- The 5 worst things you could do for your roof
- 6 coolest things brewing in Arizona
- The virus that keeps head and neck cancers on the rise
- State Fair ‘Kid Reporter’ has all the angles covered
- 4 important things to know about timeshare maintenance fees
- Signs of delayed car crash injuries
- The truth about sports concussions
- The Alzheimer's epidemic: Facts you need to know
- The season is here, keep your Fantasy Football team strong all season
- 8 TV shows you can't miss this fall
- Football is here: 6 tips to make this your best season ever