After the NHL Draft, free agency and other offseason moves, NHL.com is examining where each team stands in preparation for the 2021-22 regular season, which starts Oct. 12. Today, the Arizona Coyotes:
2020-21 season: 24-26-6, fifth in Honda West Division; did not qualify for Stanley Cup Playoffs
Shayne Gostisbehere, D: The 28-year-old was acquired in a trade with the Philadelphia Flyers, along with two picks in the 2022 NHL Draft, for future considerations July 22. He scored 20 points (nine goals, 11 assists) and averaged 19:56 of ice time in 41 games last season. … Carter Hutton, G: The 35-year-old signed a one-year contract July 28. He was 1-10-1 with a 3.47 goals-against average and .886 save percentage in 13 games (12 starts) for the Buffalo Sabres last season. … Anton Stralman, D: The 35-year-old was acquired in a trade with the Florida Panthers, along with defenseman prospect Vladislav Kolyachonok and a second-round pick in the 2024 NHL Draft, for a seventh-round pick in the 2023 NHL Draft on July 26. He scored nine points (three goals, six assists) in 38 games and did not score a point in five Stanley Cup Playoff games last season. … Ryan Dzingel, F: The 29-year-old signed a one-year contract July 28 after scoring 13 points (eight goals, five assists) in 40 games for the Carolina Hurricanes and Ottawa Senators last season. … Andre Tourigny, coach: The 47-year-old was hired July 1 after it was announced May 9 that Rick Tocchet would not return as coach after four seasons. Tourigny is a two-time Ontario Hockey League Coach of the Year (2018-19, 2019-20) and was an assistant for first-place Canada at the 2021 IIHF World Championship.
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Oliver Ekman-Larsson, D: Arizona’s captain was traded to the Vancouver Canucks for forwards Jay Beagle, Antoine Roussel and Loui Eriksson and three draft picks July 23. Ekman-Larsson scored 24 points (three goals, 21 assists) in 46 games last season. … Darcy Kuemper, G: He was traded to the Colorado Avalanche on July 28 for defenseman Conor Timmins, a first-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft and a conditional third-round pick in the 2024 NHL Draft on July 28. Kuemper was 10-11-3 with a 2.56 GAA, .907 save percentage and two shutouts in 27 games last season. … Conor Garland, F: He was sent to the Canucks in the Ekman-Larsson trade after scoring 39 points (12 goals, 27 assists) in 49 games last season. … Antti Raanta, G: He agreed to a two-year contract with the Hurricanes on July 28 after going 5-5-2 with a 3.36 GAA and .905 save percentage in 12 games (11 starts) last season.
On the cusp
Dylan Guenther, F: The 18-year-old was selected with the No. 9 pick in the 2021 NHL Draft. He scored 24 points (12 goals, 12 assists) in 12 games for Edmonton of the Western Hockey League last season. … Victor Soderstrom, D: The 20-year-old scored two points (one goal, one assist) and averaged 16:19 of ice time in four games with the Coyotes, and scored 10 points (two goals, eight assists) in 32 games with Tucson of the American Hockey League last season, his first professional season in North America. … Jan Jenik, F: The 20-year-old scored one goal in each of in his first two NHL games, at the San Jose Sharks on May 7 and 8. He scored 14 points (six goals, eight assists) in 29 games with Tucson of the AHL during his first pro season.
What they still need
More production from the young forward core of Clayton Keller, 23; Nick Schmaltz, 25; Barrett Hayton, 21; and Christian Dvorak, 25, who combined to score 43 goals last season for a team led by 33-year-old forward Phil Kessel in goals (20) and points (43). Arizona’s offensive production dropped from 2.71 goals per game in 2019-20 to 2.68 last season. They also could use improved play on the penalty kill, which was tied with the Minnesota Wild for 11th (80.8 percent) after it was fifth (82.7 percent) in 2019-20.
They said it
“It’s been a good time to be a ‘Yote.’ We were very fortunate to be at a good time where a lot of our contracts were expiring, and we were able to take on some players and gain some picks. The Coyotes haven’t gotten a lot of bounces over the years, so it’s probably nice to see them get a few this year.” — general manager Bill Armstrong
Even with Arizona trading Garland, Ekman-Larsson and Kuemper, defenseman Jakob Chychrun remains fantasy relevant, a fringe top-20 player at the position and ranked just outside the top 100 overall. He led NHL defensemen in goals (18) last season, ranked second in shots on goal (176, four behind Dougie Hamilton, now with the New Jersey Devils) and was tied with Quinn Hughes of the Canucks for 10th in points (41 in 56 games). Even with concerns about Chychrun’s supporting cast, he’s a viable third fantasy defenseman in almost any league. — Pete Jensen
Clayton Keller — Nick Schmaltz — Phil Kessel
Barrett Hayton — Christian Dvorak — Christian Fischer
Lawson Crouse — Johan Larsson — Dmitrij Jaskin
Ryan Dzingel — Jay Beagle — Antoine Roussel
Jakob Chychrun — Conor Timmins
Shayne Gostisbehere — Ilya Lyubushkin
Anton Stralman — Victor Soderstrom