The Runner Sports

Arizona Coyotes Are Trade Deadline Sellers

With the trade deadline just two weeks away, the Arizona Coyotes are surveying their trade options as sellers. They are sellers due to two primary factors. They are currently residing in 29th place in the standings, and they will have nine players who are either restricted or unrestricted free agents on their roster at the end of the season.

That means that freshman General Manager John Chayka and newly promoted Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations/Head Coach Dave Tippett have their work cut out for them. Here is the list of players and their current salary cap hits per Spotrac.

  • Defenseman Michael Stone – $4 million
  • Forward Shane Doan – $3,876,134
  • Forward Martin Hanzal – $3.1 million
  • Forward Radim Vrbata – $1 million
  • Forward Ryan White – $1 million
  • Forward Peter Holland – $881,124
  • Forward Alexander Burmistrov – $697,491
  • Forward Jordan Martinook – $612,500
  • Forward Anthony Duclair – $429,200

Which Arizona Coyotes players could be moved

Now, the speculation that has been covered the most has been on Martin Hanzal and longtime Coyote and captain Shane Doan. Hanzal’s name has been linked to about ten teams in pursuit of his services. Of course, what a team wants and what team can afford due to the salary cap are two very different things. The demands of GM Chayka, who wants an NHL ready young player plus a first-round draft pick, may not happen. In fact, the Montreal Canadiens have been rumored to have interest in Hanzal, but the demands of Chayka turned away any serious discussions for now.

Hanzal’s a good two-way, excellent defensive player, as well as a face-off expert. His size at 6’6”, 226 pounds doesn’t hurt either, unless you’re on the receiving end of one of his hits. Talks between the team and Hanzal’s agent have ceased, pretty well summing up the fact that he will be dealt before the trade deadline. Buyers are waiting to see if Chayka backs down on his demands for a return on the big Czech player.

Shane Doan’s story is quite different. He has control of the outcome of his fate, since he signed a one-year deal with a no-movement clause to play this season. There have been numerous accounts of him wanting to go for a Stanley Cup, seeing that this will more than likely be his last season playing NHL hockey. According to Doan, it would need to be a perfect scenario for him to leave his situation in Arizona. He has a ranch here, his wife loves the area, and his kids are growing into the ages where you don’t want to uproot them and move.

If Doan decides to leave it would need to be a Pacific Division team so he’s close to home. The San Jose Sharks have been interested in adding him to their roster for a couple of years now. Still, it would be more than bizarre to see Doan in another uniform besides the Sedona Red Arizona Coyotes jersey.

Breaking down the other players

Michael Stone’s stock has been rising since he seems to be recovering nicely from knee surgery, which kept him sidelined for six months since late last season. He’s only 26, and a tough defender with some offensive ability due to his heavy shot from the point. Throw in the fact that he is a right-handed shooting blue-liner and there has been some interest in obtaining him from the Yotes.

His vulnerability is due to the fact that the Coyotes have stocked up with young defensemen like Jakob Chychurn on the current roster, along with Anthony DeAngelo and Kyle Wood waiting in the wings in Tucson. They also acquired Alex Goligoski from Dallas in the off-season to supplement their back-line. DeAngelo looks to take that right point that Stone has been filling. His upside is his offense, but he was sent down to Tucson of the AHL to work on his defensive shortcomings.

Radim Vrbata is another viable option for a rental player on a team vying for a Cup. He leads the Arizona Coyotes in scoring with 11 goals and 27 assists in 55 games. A team picking him up may need to pay the bonuses he has in his contract, which include up to another $1 million. He is a sharpshooter, and finds the net along with excellent playmaking skills. He wants to stay in Arizona, as this is his third stint in the desert, but has been rumored to be moved.

Jordan Martinook may have been lost in the shuffle in all this trade talk. He is an outstanding hustling fourth line player who is used on the penalty kill, but has also contributed nicely to the offense. He has scored eight goals, with 10 assists and a good +/- of +2. It would seem the Arizona Coyotes would re-sign him, as there hasn’t been any speculation about a deal involving him. Then again, you never know when deals go down there’s usually a player thrown in to sweeten the pot.

Ryan White, Peter Holland, and Alexander Burmistrov may stay or just re-sign with another team at this point. White is a fourth line tough guy whose tenacity is welcomed. Holland was brought in to help when the team lost center Brad Richardson to a season ending broken leg. He may not be around next year. Burmistrov could re-sign with the team, as he has shown sparks of brilliance and speed.

The final player who may be caught in the trade winds is Anthony Duclair. After a very successful season last year collecting 20 goals and 24 assists, he has crashed and burned this season. His three goals, six assists in 41 games earned him an assignment to Tucson of the AHL to find his scoring prowess. Before he was sent down, there was all kinds of talk of him being traded, which could have just been a motivation exercise.

Final analysis

The Arizona Coyotes will look entirely different next season. With nearly half the game-time roster showing players whose contract are expiring, you will indeed need a scorecard to keep up with the changes. The good part is change is good. In the Arizona Coyotes’ case, it may very will be what gets them out of their funk of not going to the playoffs five consecutive seasons. The other factor is now that Dave Tippett has more latitude in player movement we will be able to witness moves he makes to improve this team. Seeing that his recent success has been below par, it may encourage him to build a better team to keep his job.

Their goal of making the playoffs after a surprising near miss last season, will not be fulfilled when they play their final game of the season on April 8, 2017, against the Minnesota Wild.

It’s going to be another long, hot summer of no playoff hockey. The white-out is almost a distant memory.

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