PHOENIX — It's getting hotter here in the Valley of the Sun, and it isn't even summer yet. The heat is coming from the recession and its impact on competition here — exemplified by the announcement late last month that Bashas' plans to close a handful of underperforming stores, just months after shuttering five locations and, even earlier, laying off approximately 500 corporate employees. In a press statement, Bashas' explained its decision to close some of its stores. “With the economy ...

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