Insider: Coyotes Players Facing "Mental Warfare"

With the news breaking on Wednesday that the NHL and the Phoenix Coyotes are "making significant and meaningful progress" towards a sale of the team and a relocation to Salt Lake City, the result is nothing but upheaval and uncertainty for those most affected: the Coyotes players. Chris Johnson told TSN's Insider Trading today that he's heard some unsettling words from those who've been embedded in that situation:

I can tell you that behind the scenes, there is a fair bit of unrest and uneasiness about the uncertainty of this team. You have players who've got kids in school, you've got players who own houses in Phoenix... Matt Dumba, who was with the Coyotes until the trade deadline, told me it's been a bit like 'mental warfare' for the players there this year.

Those are the guys, of course, that stand to be completely uprooted, and with all the negotiations happening behind closed doors, there's not a lot of certainty for them.

The NHLPA is doing what I can to keep players in the loop, but at this point in time what they're being told is, there's a world in which they will be moving to Salt Lake City for next season.

As noted, however, by Johnson's fellow TSN Insider Pierre LeBrun, there's "nothing simple when it comes to this story, and what's playing out in the desert." Currently up in the air is when a deal could get done, and still, with the "challenging situation" the league faces, IF it ultimately gets done. 

Meanwhile, the Coyotes have three games left to play in the season, with the potential finale in Arizona coming next Wednesday night.