The Phoenix Coyotes' roots expand beyond the borders of the United States, and beyond the NHL, for that matter. In 1971, the Winnipeg Jets gained admittance to the World Hockey Association and eventually won three AVCO Cup championships before the WHA folded in 1979. The Jets were one of four franchises adopted by the NHL after their former league broke up. They played for nearly 20 more years in Manitoba's capital city, but on December 19, 1995, the Winnipeg Jets ownership announced they'd be moving the franchise to Phoenix, where it would adopt a new, Southwestern moniker. The move to Arizona was met with instant success, as the newly named Coyotes made the playoffs in five of their first six seasons and howling swept the city as a popular hobby among local pets. All told, the Jets and Coyotes have combined for 19 playoff appearances in 33 seasons—this despite a carousel that has seen 11 different head coaches at the helm. The highlight of all those playoff appearances came in 2012 with the team's first-ever trip to the conference finals, where it fell to the eventual Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings.
After joining the National League's West Division in 1998, it only took four seasons for the Arizona Diamondbacks to become World Series champions, making them the fastest expansion team to win it all in MLB history. Since then, the D-backs faithful continue to fill the stands of Chase Field, a 48,000-seat retractable-roof ballpark constructed for the team's inaugural season. The widest LED board in Major League Baseball replays crucial saves and high-flying hits in 136'x46' of high-definition glory, and just beyond the fence in right-center field, a swimming pool allows fans armed with foam noodles to whack opponents' home runs back into play. During the fourth inning of every game, kids can interact with D. Baxter the Bobcat in his upper-concourse Den equipped with slides and batting cages.
Bringing clotheslines, grapples, and swan dives to the state's wrestling fanatics, the Arizona Wrestling Federation assembles amateur fighters to showcase their skills in live events. Based in Glendale, the AWF is a member of the United Independent Wrestling Affiliates, an international organization of wrestlers that maintains rankings and keeps track of standards based on the most current lines of aerodynamic folding chairs.
A Peoria fixture since 2004, Arizona Broadway Theatre combines performances with fine dining, a marriage that helped garner the title of Best Playhouse from PHOENIX magazine in 2010. Curtains open to a cast of talented performers, who were culled from auditions in New York and the Valley of the Sun, and have belted out Broadway staples such as Grease, Fiddler on the Roof, and Singin' in the Rain. Servers glide through the tiered theater hall prior to performances, peppering white tablecloths with platefuls of American fare. Previous show's menus have included such dishes as steak diane's sliced tenderloin paired with saut?ed shallots and lyonnaise potatoes, which entertain patrons' stomachs without forcing them to eat the show's program.
Since 1986, Theater Works Peoria's mission has been to shower northwest suburban Phoenix with engaging entertainment, produced by members of their own community. Directors mount productions of Broadway plays and musicals, holiday classics, and adaptations from film, literature, and Bazooka bubblegum wrappers. A bevy of youth programs line up a parallel season of plays, workshops, and camps.