The Arizona Coyotes announced today that they have named Xavier Gutierrez as their new team president and CEO. He becomes the first Latino to hold such a position in the NHL.
Xavier Gutierrez is New Coyotes President/CEO
— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) June 8, 2020
Xavier Gutierrez Takes Over as Team President/CEO
According to owner Alex Meruelo, who told NHL.com “I have known Xavier for over a decade and he is a seasoned executive with over 20 years of business and investment experience. We have the same approach to business and his intellect, leadership skills and strategic mindset made him a clear choice to be our new CEO. He is a leader with tremendous vision and integrity, and I have the utmost confidence that he can help the Coyotes become a world class organization on and off the ice.
Meruelo became the first Hispanic owner in the NHL. He bought the controlling interest in the Coyotes from Andrew Barroway on July 29, 2019.
Gutierrez joins the Coyotes after serving as Managing Director for California investment firm Clearlake Capital Group. He previously worked with Meruelo as chief investment officer of Meruelo Group. He also was president/chief investment officer of Meruelo Investment Partners.
What This Means Going Forward
Aaron Cohen left the Coyotes’ organization on May 12th. It was somewhat of a surprise since he had been doing some good things in the community. He helped market the team and raise the attendance to games.
Yet, most thought that the new owner, Alex Meruelo would want his own team in the organization and Cohen wasn’t the man for the job.
It isn’t clear why Mereulo had removed Cohen but it could be related to the scandal that broke some months ago. Arizona had some prospects in for workouts outside of the bounds set in the collective bargaining agreement. The NHL has not determined how to punish Arizona yet. The move could also simply be a shakeup to bring in different personnel that Mereulo knows better and feels more comfortable around.
It is hoped that Gutierrez can be a leader for this organization which needs stability and progressive thoughts to carry the team forward.
The Coyotes are scheduled to meet the Nashville Predators in the 16-team play-in series. It will determine who gets to the playoffs. That is if and when the playoffs take place.