Arizona Coyotes’ Dylan Strome Likely Scratched For Home Opener


Arizona Coyotes top prospect Dylan Strome is a likely healthy scratch for the home opener in Glendale.

After including five rookies on their initial roster, the Arizona Coyotes have decided to sit at least one of them.

3rd overall pick Dylan Strome is likely to be scratched tomorrow as the team drops the puck on it’s 20th season.

Strome has been supplanted by Christian Dvorak and Laurent Dauphin for the two open center spots on the roster, and as such will instead watch his predicted debut from the press box.

The news comes as a bit of a surprise after his inclusion on the 23-man roster.

Many have #20 slotted for a 9-game tryout with the Arizona Coyotes before being returned to Erie, but it appears even that countdown will be delayed as the Yotes get a look at the two other young centers who made the club out of camp.

Christian Dvorak looks to center a line featuring Jamie McGinn (if healthy) and Anthony Duclair, while Dauphin will get work on the 4th line with Tobias Rieder and Ryan White.

It all adds up to disappointment for Strome, whom many expected to start on October 15th.

Instead of skating out to his name coming over the PA during player introductions, the 19-year-old may be sitting in the stands and have to double down so that it doesn’t happen again.

For fans attending and watching from home, there will no doubt be disappointment.

Dylan Strome is a big part of the future of this team, and fans expected that future to begin Saturday. It will, just not with Strome in the lineup.

For Strome himself, it appears the work he put in over the past year still isn’t quite enough to impress Head Coach Dave Tippett and General Manager John Chayka.

The decision is a curious one.

Much of the 2016-17 promotional material has featured Strome prominently. His predicted debut likely sold some tickets to Saturday night’s 6 PM matchup with the Flyers.

His inclusion on the roster was a surprise to some, though not all, but it appeared he would safely play out at least nine games on the NHL roster before returning to Erie.

Now he will sit in suit and tie instead of playing, bringing into question why the Coyotes kept the youngster in Glendale in the first place.

Craig Morgan reports that Dave Tippett could foresee Strome and Dvorak swapping in and out of the lineup while Dauphin gets regular playing time.

That situation doesn’t seem to serve either player, however.

Christian Dvorak has more than earned his playing time. He deserves to dress every night.

Dylan Strome’s case is less cut-and-dried, though it’s reasonable to question whether he’ll develop better in Erie running over kids or in the NHL getting occasionally run over and oft-tested.

Throughout an impactful training camp, Laurent Dauphin became the wild card in the process.

He, too, has earned his NHL chance, but the role he is expected to play is filled once over by Brad Richardson and was later filled again with the acquisition of Ryan White.

This center logjam has created Strome’s predicament.

Without consistent playing time, #20 will be better off playing full-time in Erie. The kid needs a trial-by-fire in the big leagues, or at the very least regular action in the OHL.

It remains to be seen what will happen with Strome moving forward.

Being the healthy scratch seems shortsighted, but platooning with Dvorak seems equally as concerning as it restricts Dvorak as well.

Next: Coyotes' Six Biggest Questions Entering 2016-17

If Dave Tippett and John Chayka are uncomfortable with Strome’s game, they should cut him loose in the OHL for one more season with a to-do list of improvements.

He won’t grow a ton, but at least he will play consistently.

Dvorak and Dauphin have earned their spots, and if they don’t feel he can surpass either of them, then he is surplus to requirements for the 2016-17 roster.