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Arizona Coyotes Prospects News
- Updated: April 18, 2017
The Arizona Coyotes active in prospect pool
Earlier in the month, the Arizona Coyotes announced that Kyle Capobianco would join their AHL affiliate Tucson Roadrunners. He was able to play just four games, but his future with the team is bright. Capobianco just finished his fourth season with the OHL’s Sudbury Wolves. He collected 45 points and is continuing to work on his defensive game. Offensively, he seems to have that figured out. He more than likely will be back in the AHL next season to work on his total game.
The Coyotes then signed Jens Looke to an entry-level contract on April 12. Looke was a third-round selection in the 2015 NHL Draft. He has played in the Swedish league for Timra and Brynas. Looke also has competed in the World Junior tournament for three years in a row. He possesses some awesome play-making skills, but may have a ways to go to develop into an NHL caliber player.
Signing a goalie was wise
Arizona also signed University of Minnesota-Duluth freshman goalie Hunter Miska. He participated in the Bulldogs’ NCAA Championship game last month. Miska, who was undrafted, will pass on his final three years of college eligibility to turn pro. His numbers are impressive, as the Coyotes look to build some depth in between the pipes. He had a 2.20 goals against average and a .920 save percentage at UMD.
The Coyotes have Mike Smith, who at 35, may be slowing down. The backup Louis Domingue had an off-season, so a new face may incite some competition for the job. The need is there with the Coyotes possessing a lowly 3.15 goals allowed per game. Then, there is Adin Hill playing in Tucson for the AHL Roadrunners looking to move up to the NHL level. Marek Langhamer is a restricted free agent playing backup in Tucson, and may not be re-signed.
If Miska can play in the AHL next season and get his feet wet, it will do him a world of good to see how the professional game feels. He has great potential, and it shows that GM John Chayka is attempting to build some depth for his team to break out of their lack of making the playoffs doldrums.
Will the Coyotes go after Neal Pionk?
Yesterday, another UMD alumnus announced he was going pro, according to Elliotte Friedman. Neal Pionk will be a highly sought after defenseman even with his lack of NHL size, which denied him being taken in the NHL entry draft. There may be some interest from the Vegas Golden Knights in signing him. He is said to have a rocket of a shot, comparable to a Shea Weber. His lack of size (5′ 11″, 170) doesn’t stop him from having a mean streak challenging opposing forwards. Pionk had 24 points in 30 games, and is a right-handed shooting play-making blueliner. That will make him very popular. So, the sweepstakes are on to see who signs him.
Will the Arizona Coyotes be one of the teams seeking his attention? You can never have enough defensemen, and perhaps Miska can convince his former teammate to come to Arizona.
It’s not like the Coyotes are lacking qualified, exciting prospects. If he could help the team down the road, it’s worth a shot… make that a blistering shot off of Pionk’s stick.