You’ve probably heard Phoenix called a non-traditional hockey market. Why argue with the overwhelming body of evidence? After all Phoenix is the only place where they boo Wayne Gretzky and cheer Gary Bettman.

If you know your history you understand the former.

But given the generally low popularity of professional sports commissioners the latter may require deeper explanation.

“It’s pretty simple actually” Coyotes alternate governor Anthony LeBlanc said after a press conference Tuesday at Jobing.com Arena to introduce the team’s new ownership group. “If it wasn’t for Gary Bettman this franchise wouldn’t be here.”

Bettman has been criticized widely for his steadfast determination to keep the Coyotes in Arizona.

Bettman fields criticism for many things but given the twists and turns of this saga the team’s staggering annual losses the sheer length of time it took to consummate a deal the numerous ownership groups that entered and exited the picture and the political roadblocks thrown up by the Goldwater Institute and the City of Glendale over the past four years it’s a small miracle Bettman chose to stay the course.