Breaking: Grading the Coyotes Blockbuster Trade Deals

Well Coyotes fans, it finally happened. The big pieces are on the move. Yesterday the team made two trades, moving their top defensive players. In a trade with the Carolina Hurricanes, Arizona shipped off Shayne Ghostisbehere while Jakob Chychrun was sent to the Ottawa Senators. In return for Ghost, who had just scored his 300 NHL point, the Coyotes received a 2026 third-round pick.

The Chychrun sweepstakes has ended and it was a surprise team, the Ottawa Senators, coming out on top. In return for an elite player, the Coyotes get three draft picks, a conditional first-round pick in 2023, a conditional second-round pick in 2024, and a second-round pick in 2026.

Per Kristin Shilton of ESPN, the first-round pick is top-five protected, becoming an unprotected first-round pick in 2024 if met. The 2024 second-round pick becomes a top ten protected first-round pick in 2024 if the Senators reach the Eastern Conference Finals. Further, if that condition is also met, then it becomes an unrestricted first-round pick in 2025. Grades and analysis for both deals are below.

Shayne Ghostisbehere Trade:

Carolina Hurricanes: A

This deal was a win-win for both teams. The Hurricanes added an excellent offensive defenseman who is a puck mover and capable of helping run the power play. For a third-round pick three years out, that’s a steal for a team contending for the Stanley Cup.

Arizona Coyotes: B for the current trade; A+ for Ghost’s Coyote career

It feels as though the Coyotes could have recouped a bit more for Ghost than a 2026 third-round pick. The timing seems to be a factor here, with him returning from injury and still getting back into form. However, the totality of Ghost’s career in the desert was a masterclass of how to rebuild. For taking on his $4.5 million cap hit these past two seasons, the Coyotes were rewarded with a second-round pick in 2022, a seventh-round pick in 2022, two strong seasons of play from Ghost, and now a 2026 third-round pick.

Jakob Chychrun Trade:

Ottawa Senators: A

This was a steal for Ottawa, who didn’t have to part ways with top prospects. The Coyotes seemed to panic as their original demands weren’t met, and the Senators took advantage. This team is surging as of late and are only three points out of the wildcard position. Adding Chychrun to bolster a stretch run was an excellent move.

Arizona Coyotes: C-

I really wanted to give this trade an F. Chychrun was easily the best player next to Clayton Keller and no top prospects were obtained. Also, two of the three picks are conditioned. This screams panic decision by a team that already was determined to move on. Rather than keeping a top-tier player with a reasonable cap hit and holding firm to their original demands, the Coyotes panicked and folded like a house of cards. The only saving grace is that all three picks, even if the conditions are met, are in the first two rounds.