This series will cover all thirty teams and go over the most important player, and player who’s performance most needs to improve to help the team succeed.
Last season ended in ignoble fashion as the Coyotes were swept onto the golf course in surprisingly easy fashion by the Detroit Red Wings. While Doan, Vrbata and Yandle all had more than a point per game a total of ten goals in four playoff games is a pretty poor showing. Worse from the teams perspective is that the off season saw the departure of Ilya Bryzgalov. The only possible bright spot in the departure of one of the NHL’s best known goalies is that he won’t be helping any conference rivals this season.In his place are two goalies who have never been #1’s in their NHL careers. There is however hope, Keith Yandle was locked up for five years and Paul Bissonette ( @BizNasty2point0 ) was just extended two years as well.
Shane Doan is the most important known quantity in the Coyotes portfolio. He’s a complete player. He scores, leads, fights, hits, occasionally gets suspended and never goes back to the bench having had a seconds rest on his shift. He’s been good for 20-30 goals a season since 99-00, and has be stated repeatedly he wants to stay in Phoenix.
While taking a shot at the potential of the goal-tending would be really easy, a bigger question is the teams best defenseman since there has at least been solid reason to hope there. Keith Yandle has improved hugely in point production. He went from above average range to top three in the NHL earning second start honors from the NHL along the way. If he keeps playing like an elite level defenseman even though Ed Jovanovski one of the few older players on the team departed over the summer for Sunrise Florida. If he even retreats to his previous level of achievement, combined with the decrease in goalie quality the team is unlikely to make the post season at all.