The Arizona Coyotes are widely considered to have one of the largest, most diverse and talented prospect pools in the NHL. But the team should be wary of rushing to get the talent into the NHL too soon.
Scoring consistently has been an issue for the Arizona Coyotes this season, as has defense and backup goaltending.
The only thing that appears to have gone right is the play of Mike Smith, who has buoyed this team to a subpar 38 points, which is good enough for second to last in the NHL.
Without Smith, the Coyotes would arguably be in the same point stratum as the beleaguered Avalanche. They would arguably be worse.
As the trade deadline approaches and the Coyotes likely look to capitalize on multiple 1st round picks in the coming draft in exchange for players like Radim Vrbata and Martin Hanzal, the team should cautiously transition in their talent pool into the NHL rather than make a long list of call-ups.
This current team alone is already laden with young, rookie or sophomore talent.
Jordan Martinook, who himself is only in his second NHL season, is still growing as is Max Domi and the recently demoted Anthony Duclair. Moreover, true rookies like Lawson Crouse, Christian Dvorak and Jakob Chychrun are still trying to acclimate to the National Hockey League.
So when the deadline comes and players get moved, the organization should not move hastily towards promoting multiple top prospects at once.
One player in particular, Christian Fischer, should even be kept in Tucson instead of promotion, even if he’s ready to make the full time jump.
The reasoning behind this is relatively simple; the Arizona Coyotes are not a playoff team and the Tucson Roadrunners are.
The Arizona Coyotes are going to lose a lot of games down the stretch and the Tucson Roadrunners will likely not. Finally, the Arizona Coyotes are looking to, for all intents and purposes, tank while the Roadrunners have a decent shot a deep AHL playoff run.
Christian Fischer has been the core of Tucson’s offensive might after the call-up of Brendan Perlini.
He has earned AHL All-Star honors this past week and participated in the minor league’s skills competition. He has an offensive, proto-typical power forward skillset that can take the Roadrunners to the next level.
The bottom line is that Christian Fischer showed a ton of promise in his call up to the Arizona Coyotes before the All-Star break, but his time may not be best spent traveling up and down the I-10 between Glendale and Tucson.
The Roadrunners are contenders. The Coyotes are not.
Fischer can help set the foundation for a strong developmental team in the desert southwest.
That foundation is far more critical than getting a few extra NHL games this year that he will almost surely make up for next season.