While awaiting the start of the Arizona Coyotes and San Jose Sharks game on Wednesday night, I had the opportunity to watch the Blues and Wild battle, which was an NHL hockey fan’s treat! Their intensity was amazing and fun to watch, and it was interesting to see what those two teams do consistently well to be so competitive night after night.
The Blues and Wild are “blue collar” teams that routinely work their collective butts off throughout their games to not let their brothers down, win or lose. That style has worked for the Blues for years and was instrumental in their Stanley Cup championship in 2019. The Wild is another solid, close knit team with skillful, dependable players that has reached the playoffs several years running, and their signing of Russian star Kirill Kaprizov has pushed them into the top three teams in the Honda West Division.
If it wasn’t for the St. Louis Blues being the biggest obstacle to the Yotes making the playoffs (until Wednesday night, of course, when the Coyotes proved once again that they themselves are in their own way), many Yotes fans would love to see the Blue Notes advance out of the Honda West Division. Their tenacity is inspiring, and when a team gives its all in pursuit of the same goal, it’s not hard to root for them.
It’s not too far of a stretch, then, to believe that Yotes General Manager Bill Armstrong is trying to retool the Arizona Coyotes roster in a similar fashion to that of the storied Blues franchise. His vast experience inside the Blues’ organization will enable him to muster his resources, reach out to his network of contacts, and emulate what the Blues do best and how they do it. After all, you shouldn’t overlook champion pedigree!
With money becoming available due to expiring contracts, the Coyotes will at least have an opportunity to reform the roster under Armstrong’s tutelage. Trades, draft picks, and free-agent signings are all on the table and are legitimate options for building the 2021-22 iteration of the Desert Dogs roster. It’s not hard to understand the lingering frustration felt by the organization and its fans by virtue of another lost season, but at least the Coyotes faithful can look forward to different names and faces in the lineup next season under a solid plan put together by GMBA and his team.
Even if it takes a couple of years to become truly competitive, Coyotes fans are willing to give the current regime some time to build a team that’s entertaining, fun to watch, and actually cares about their product on the ice. What they’ve seen lately doesn’t cut it, and thus changes are finally afoot. Let’s go Coyotes!