Round 3 of selecting a NEW TEAM has landed on the shoulders of the Phoenix Coyotes. The Coyotes are an interesting option right now. Coming on the heals of a fairly busy trade deadline, they have managed to save some money by sending out Oli Jokinen, F Daniel Carcillo, G Mikael Tellqvist D Derek Morris, 2009 3rd Rd. Pick and getting back D Dmitri Kalinin, F Nigel Dawes, F Petr Prucha, F Scottie Upshall, 2011 2nd Rd. Pick, F Matthew Lombardi F Brandon Prust, 2009 or 2010 1st Rd. Pick, 2010 4th Rd. Pick. Jokinen wasn’t fitting in Pheonix and had a big contract. They should never have moved Keith Ballard for Jokinen in the first place so that does call into question certain personnel moves fro the GM’s office. At least they managed to get back some quality bodies although the one concern is that they are small and soft and they got smaller and softer and with Prucha and Dawes 2 players that are in need to prove themselves. On the plus side they did get some good draft picks going forward. It seems that they do have a decent scouting staff but that could be skewed by them being bad for so long that they could just be just falling ass backwards into good picks.
They have a good young team and have many good young prospects in the system including Brett MacLean and the youngest Staal, Jared. Already on the roster is captain Shane Doan who is underrated but a true first line pressure player. Peter Meuller, Kyle Turris, Viktor Tikhonov and Mikkel Boedker are good up and comers but the blueline looks to be a little weak at first glance and that need to be tended to. It does help that they have solid goaltender in Ila Bryzgalov to helps hide some defensive weaknesses the team has.
One big issue still remains...the team is looking good on the ice and maybe even behind the bench as Wayne Gretzky is actually having some success coaching this young team, but the franchise looks to be in big trouble. For a franchise that has already been moved once from Winnipeg and with the amount of debt that they have the franchise may be in jeopardy of either being on the move again, disbanded and/or consolidated with another team. With that kind of uncertainty I don’t know if I want to hitch my cart to that horse going up that mountain.
If the team had more certainty it would make a better case for itself but right now it seems like it may be fighting an uphill battle. Ownership and team viability will play a major role in their candidacy.
Well that is 3 down and I guess one more to go and then it will become decision time. After this review things have actually tightened up and what direction I believed to be going in has shifted a bit. There was, as in any sporting event a favorite going in. On paper it was a bit clearer but as we know these games arn’t played on paper. Sometimes the role of underdog is actually more advantageous.