Arizona Coyotes: Rapid hockey growth in the desert


The Arizona Coyotes organization has worked tirelessly to expand and grow hockey in the desert. How? First by targeting the youth; with their “Part of the Pack” campaign they are doing just that and more. 

The Arizona Coyotes work hard not only to bring a solid winning team to Arizona but to grow and inspire the youth. To help growth of hockey in the desert, and keep people in love with the game.

The players are all part of the program too, visiting local rinks to play and practice with local travel hockey teams.

We even have former Coyote players coaching travel hockey here as we speak.

Players like Derek Morris, Ray Whitney, and Tyson Nash, who all help coach within the Jr. Coyotes organization.

The player visits and time on the ice not only draw attention to our dedication to the sport, but inspires the youth to be like the pros stepping on the ice with them.

Look at Arizona Coyotes prospect Dean Stewart.

He grew up watching Shane Doan, taking a picture with the Captain as a 9-year-old kid and now has the possibility to play with him and learn from him.

That moment was huge and one that he’ll never forget.

Stewart told the media, “Obviously I was a huge fan of him and the Coyotes. I would have never expected that years later I would be part of the organization.”

Growing the game is a win-win for everyone.

The players and organization help grow the game by interacting with the youth. Our travel teams then travel to different states competing, showcasing themselves and representing the Arizona name wherever they go.

Some of these players then grow up and do big things.

One prominent example is that of Auston Matthews and the Arizona Bobcats organization. Our local collegiate level teams also select from the youth teams here. Other hockey colleges are following suit, liking what they see from youth hockey in Arizona and recruiting players as well.

In hockey, people are always gonna ask, “Where are you from?”

In Phoenix, the high school hockey league has over 14 teams for players to choose from, some having impressive history.

The Little Howlers Hockey program is a youth hockey program that cooperates with the Arizona Coyotes Hockey Development Program, Arizona Amateur Hockey Association, One Goal and rinks here in AZ.

It provides an introduction to hockey for the ages 4-8 and gives each kid a set of free hockey gear to use throughout the program.

The Arizona State hockey team is also poised for a huge impact to the growth of hockey in the desert.

With winning a ACHA Division I National Championship and then becoming an NCAA Division I program, ASU has opened eyes in the hockey world that players from all over can come play for a quality program in Arizona.

Now offering women’s ice hockey, ASU hockey is making a splash.

The growth doesn’t stop with youth programs and collegiate hockey, however.

The Arizona Coyotes also recently purchased the Springfield Falcons and relocated them to Tucson where they rechristened the team as the Roadrunners.

Now having both an AHL team and collegiate level team in Tucson, hockey is growing even bigger for the Valley.

Arizona currently has multiple rinks all over the Valley, is home to seven youth hockey teams, three college hockey teams; ASU, NAU, and UofA. There are also two Junior Hockey programs; such as the Arizona Hawks and Phoenix Knights.

The Arizona Coyotes organization even goes out of their way to cherish and show support to youth teams throughout the state.

For example, allowing the Arizona Hockey Union’s West Side teams to make Gila River Arena their home ice.

Next: Would One More Trade Put The Coyotes In Playoff Contention?

The Coyotes even have regular season games that they dedicate to the youth hockey players, teams and organizations all over Arizona.

In a bid to grow the game in uncommon territory, the Arizona Coyotes are striving to make sure everyone feels “Part of the Pack”.