NCAA star and Arizona Coyotes third overall pick in the 2022 NHL Draft Logan Cooley announced he would return to the University of Minnesota for another year of college hockey.
With Cooley out of the picture for next season, Frank Seravalli and Tyler Yamrechuk talk about what other roster changes could come out of Arizona this summer and if there could be potential recruitment challenges to bring NHL free agents to the desert due to the Coyotes arena fiasco.
Tyler Yaremchuk: Let’s talk about another Western Conference team, that’s the Arizona Coyotes. You think back to last week when Logan Cooley, a top three pick, said he was going back to school, and the word was there was definitely some uncertainty in regards to the future of this Coyotes franchise and that led to him going back to school for another year. Is it fair to say they might have trouble recruiting free agents this off-season with all the drama surrounding their arena deal?
Frank Seravalli: Yeah, I don’t expect them to be super active in the free agency market anyways, but how do you think the sixth and 12th overall picks are going to feel when they’re selected by the Coyotes in a few weeks? Probably not that great. If you could pick any team not to be selected by, they’d probably be near the top of the list given this circus that has embroiled this franchise for, I guess, the last 15 years, that has now finally come to ahead. I think everyone would like to see some type of clarity now as to what’s next for the coyotes, but they’re out of answers, and they’re scrambling; they’re like a duck underwater paddling to the shore to save themselves.
Their entire franchise future is at stake based on where they are headed next. First off, you have to get someone to want you. Someone in the municipality, someone to talk up and build the arena and two, you can’t go wrong; you can’t get it wrong. Time is of the essence in relation to all of that. When I think of the Coyotes number one priority is actually having a franchise in Arizona, the next arena. Two; what about the rest of it? What about building this team out, what about checking additional positional boxes moving forward? They’ve got a lot of really nice pieces, a bevy of draft picks, and I wonder about the future of everything now.
Bill Armstrong has timed this perfectly: “Hey, we are going to be really good when we hit the ice in three years at our new home in Tempe.” That’s out the window now, and I think you have to put a bit more notice on having a competitive team, drawing interest into and maybe solving some of your problems. Where are the Coyotes going? The answer is no where fast enough.
You can watch the full episode here…