B's owner Jacobs hopes Coyotes stay

BOSTON -- Boston Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs is hoping the newfound excitement around the Phoenix Coyotes and playoff hockey in the desert can help keep the franchise there.

"Let's see what these playoffs have done to this team," Jacobs said Thursday following his end of the season news conference with his son and team principal Charlie Jacobs along with Bruins president Cam Neely. "The statistics and the demographics of Phoenix are very big. That's a very, very big market. And there's a lot, to take a franchise without an owner, it takes away some of the heart and soul of that. If we can get a heart and soul to that, I think you can have somebody that can really harvest that market, especially coming off a winning season like this."

As the city of Glendale, Ariz., and the NHL try to determine if the Coyotes can remain and survive where they are amid uncertainty hovering over ownership and an arena lease agreement, the Coyotes have gone on the longest playoff run in franchise history. The team has created a positive buzz heading into Game 4 of a Western Conference semifinals series with Nashville. The Coyotes lead the series, 2-1.

Jacobs likened the Phoenix situation to that of the Dallas Stars, another team that experienced financial troubles but is now making progress again in a big media market under the direction of new owner Tom Gagliardi.

"I would like to stay in the Phoenix market, and I think most of the league would feel similarly because Phoenix is a Dallas," the Bruins owner said. "It's that sized type of market, where if you stimulate it, it will be successful. I think they've had just a lot of uncertainty for a very long time. We're hopeful it'll stick."