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Coyotes season preview: Rebuild, development continue
The 2022-23 NHL season starts Oct. 7. With training camps opening soon, NHL.com is taking a look at the three keys, the inside scoop on roster questions, and the projected lineup for each of the 32 teams. Today, the Arizona Coyotes.Coach: Andre Tourigny (second season)Last season: 25-50-7, eighth place in Central Division; did not qualify for Stanley Cup Playoffs3 KEYS1. Growing from withinThe Coyotes are deep into a rebuild with a focus on drafting and player developmen...
The 2022-23 NHL season starts Oct. 7. With training camps opening soon, NHL.com is taking a look at the three keys, the inside scoop on roster questions, and the projected lineup for each of the 32 teams. Today, the Arizona Coyotes.
Coach: Andre Tourigny (second season)
Last season: 25-50-7, eighth place in Central Division; did not qualify for Stanley Cup Playoffs
1. Growing from within
The Coyotes are deep into a rebuild with a focus on drafting and player development. There are also reasons they can be better than finishing 31st in the NHL last season, ahead of only the Montreal Canadiens. Arizona is hoping Clayton Keller will be ready by the season opener at the Pittsburgh Penguins on Oct. 13 following surgery for a broken leg sustained March 30, ending a season when the forward scored an NHL career-high 28 goals in 67 games.
Jakob Chychrun, a subject of frequent trade rumors, scored seven goals after leading NHL defensemen with 18 in 2020-21 and has three seasons remaining on a six-year contract he signed Nov. 13, 2018. Even if Keller scores 30 goals and Chychrun returns to form (and is not traded), it won't be nearly enough if Nick Schmaltz and Lawson Crouse don't provide secondary scoring and at least one prospect produces with significant ice time in the NHL.
2. Karel's Korner
The Coyotes goalie pipeline isn't NHL ready, which leaves a heavier workload for Karel Vejmelka. The 26-year-old, who was a fifth-round pick (No. 145) by the Nashville Predators in the 2015 NHL Draft, finished second among rookies in games (52) and starts (49) behind Alex Nedeljkovic of the Detroit Red Wings (59 and 52), tied for fifth in wins (13) with Dan Vladar of the Calgary Flames in wins and was eighth with an .898 save percentage (minimum 10 games).
3. Road warriors
The Coyotes will play 20 of their first 24 games on the road and the odds of a fast start are long. Their first three games are against Stanley Cup Playoff teams (Penguins, Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs) from last season. They have four home games from Oct. 28-Nov. 3 before a 14-game road trip from Nov. 5 to Dec. 7 thanks to $20 million in renovations of Arizona State University's new multipurpose arena, their home ice for at least the next three seasons.
Making the cut
The opportunity is there for forward prospects Jack McBain, Nathan Smith, Matias Maccelli and Jan Jenik, and defenseman prospect Victor Soderstrom, to break training camp with the Coyotes. McBain, 22, might start as the fourth-line center. He ended his career at Boston College with 33 points (19 goals, 14 assists) in 24 games as a senior and had two goals and one assist in 10 games for the Coyotes following a trade from the Minnesota Wild on March 21 and signing a two-year, entry-level contract two days later. Travis Boyd, Nick Bjugstad and Barrett Hayton enter camp ahead on the depth chart, a storyline that will be fluid depending on McBain's development.
Most intriguing addition
The Coyotes need a bit of everything and hope Bjugstad provides versatility, experience and leadership to a team without a captain since Oliver Ekman-Larsson was traded to the Vancouver Canucks on July 23, 2021. Bjugstad signed a one-year contract July 13 after he had 13 points (seven goals, 13 assists) for the Wild last season. The 30-year-old forward played 57 games last season, his most since playing 64 in 2018-19 (32 each for the Florida Panthers and Penguins), because of multiple groin surgeries and back surgery.
Biggest potential surprise
J.J. Moser is set to challenge for major minutes in his first full NHL season, especially if the Coyotes trade Chychrun or Shayne Gostisbehere, a pending unrestricted free agent. Moser, a 22-year-old defenseman, could be another building block after Dysin Mayo, a fifth-round pick (No. 133) in the 2014 NHL Draft, emerged last season on the top pair with Gostisbehere. Though Moser was minus-10 with 24 turnovers in 43 games, he blocked 55 shots and had one goal and one assist in his last four games while averaging more than 21 minutes. The second-round pick (No. 60) in the 2021 NHL Draft was expected to contribute, just not this quickly.
Ready to break through
Crouse signed a five-year contract Aug. 8 following NHL career highs of 20 goals and 34 points in 65 games. The 25-year-old was a restricted free agent and avoided a salary arbitration hearing by choosing stability in Arizona. He's projected for big minutes at second-line left wing, which could produce better numbers over 82 games.
Schmaltz, C/RW (fantasy average draft position: 173.2) -- He nearly had a point per game for the Coyotes last season (NHL career-high 59 in 63 games), including seven points on March 5 (most in NHL in single game since Sam Gagner had eight for Edmonton Oilers on Feb. 2, 2012), and remains a fantasy sleeper candidate with usual linemate Keller (tied with Schmaltz for Arizona's lead with 0.94 points per game). -- Pete Jensen
Nick Schmaltz -- Travis Boyd -- Clayton Keller
Lawson Crouse -- Nick Bjugstad -- Zack Kassian
Shayne Gostisbehere -- Dysin Mayo
Jakob Chychrun -- Troy Stecher
J.J. Moser -- Josh Brown
Arizona Coyotes expect to sell out every home game at ASU, say season-ticket revenue up 50% over Glendale arena
Greg Wyshynski ESPNhttps://www.espn.com/nhl/story/_/id/34544448/arizona-coyotes-expect-sell-every-home-game-asu-say-season-ticket-revenue-50-glendale-arena
The Arizona Coyotes expect to sell out every home game this season at Arizona State University's Mullett Arena and say their season-ticket revenue has surpassed what they were generating in their former home in Glendale.The Coyotes will play in the new multipurpose facility on ASU's campus for at least the next three seasons while seeking to build an arena on city-owned land in Tempe. The Tempe City Council voted in favor of a bid in...
The Arizona Coyotes expect to sell out every home game this season at Arizona State University's Mullett Arena and say their season-ticket revenue has surpassed what they were generating in their former home in Glendale.
The Coyotes will play in the new multipurpose facility on ASU's campus for at least the next three seasons while seeking to build an arena on city-owned land in Tempe. The Tempe City Council voted in favor of a bid in June to move forward on negotiations for the new arena and entertainment district. The Tempe project has been estimated at $1.7 billion and the team expects there to be a vote on the deal this fall.
"We're still very confident that we have the right deal, the right project and the right ownership group to get it done," Coyotes president and CEO Xavier A. Gutierrez told ESPN on Wednesday. "It's the first privately financed sports and entertainment district in the history of Arizona. This is the bridge to that."
Mullett Arena, named for a family that has supported the ASU Sun Devils' Division I hockey program, will have an official capacity of 5,025 fans. The capacity for Coyotes games has yet to be determined, but it's expected to be between 4,800 and 5,000 fans.
"We know this is going to be sold out for every single game and we never had any doubt that was going to be the case," Gutierrez said. "We could have sold this out to our existing season-ticket base, but we didn't think that was the right approach. We want to make sure that fans who have never experienced a game could experience it. That's a very tricky thing when you've downsized capacity."
To compensate for the smaller capacity -- the building in Glendale, formerly Gila River Arena and now Desert Diamond Arena, held 17,125 for hockey -- the Coyotes priced every seat outside of the ASU student section as a lower bowl seat. The average ticket price at their former arena was in the $90 range. The average ticket price at Mullett Arena is $170. The NHL average is $154.
Because of that pricing, Gutierrez said the Coyotes have generated 50% more revenue from all their season-ticket plans than "we ever did in the history" of the Glendale arena.
"We're not gouging people here," he said. "You're slightly above an NHL average now while you were well below an NHL average before. And we're in a much more centrally located area."
There have also been changes in how the team sells suites. The Coyotes had around 80 suites in their former arena and sold around 60 of them. At Mullett Arena, they have 20 suites, which have all sold out. In some cases, they were sold on half-season plans so create greater inventory.
The ASU student section will be around 400 seats. There will also be a standing room section of around 300 seats from which the Coyotes may carve out additional student seating. Ticket prices for the student section will be around $25-$50 per game.
"We're on ASU's campus. This is great for the gameday experience and great for the cultivation of fans. You can't be on campus and not have that youthful infusion," Gutierrez told ESPN.
The Coyotes play their first home game on the ASU campus on Oct. 28 against the Winnipeg Jets. The game will be shown exclusively on ESPN+ and Hulu.
Andy Reid blames injuries on Cardinals’ turf
MSN Real Estatehttps://www.msn.com/en-us/sports/nfl/andy-reid-blames-injuries-on-cardinals-turf/ar-AA11Nw0a
Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid said Tuesday he believes turf conditions at the Arizona Cardinals‘ State Farm Stadium are to blame for injuries to two ke...
The Chiefs rolled to an easy 44-21 win over the Cardinals Sunday, but the victory came at a high price. Kicker Harrison Butker (ankle) and cornerback Trent McDuffie (hamstring) suffered injuries in the game.
“They resodded it, which is a good thing because they practice in there,” Reid said, regarding the field at State Farm Stadium. “But it was a little bit loose. That’s what happens sometimes when you resod, is it’s loose.
“It was part of the Butker injury and McDuffie injury … The turf picked up and I would tell you that that did have something to do with it. If it didn’t, I would tell you that, too. So it’s not an excuse by any means, but I mean, you all can see it. Watch the tape.”
On Tuesday, the Chiefs placed McDuffie on IR, meaning the 2022 first-round pick will miss at least four games. According to ESPN, Butker is unlikely to play against the Los Angeles Chargers in Thursday night’s game. While the team used safety Justin Reid on a couple of extra points and to kick off against the Cardinals, they signed kicker Matt Amendola to the practice squad Tuesday, and he could be activated for Thursday’s game.
In an unrelated move Tuesday, the Chiefs signed wide receiver Corey Coleman, the No. 15 overall pick by Cleveland in the 2016 NFL Draft, to their practice squad.
The post Andy Reid blames injuries on Cardinals’ turf appeared first on The Comeback: Today’s Top Sports Stories & Reactions.
Arizona Coyotes' ticket prices for single-game tickets spike at ASU's Mullett Arena
Want to go to an Arizona Coyotes game this season?It's going to cost you more than you might be accustomed to paying.Due to the smaller capacity at the team's temporary home, Mullett Arena at ASU, which holds 5,000 seats, the demand and price of single-game tickets for the Coyotes is on the rise.As of Wednesday morning, the least expensive tickets for the Coyotes' home opener against the Winnipeg Jets on Oct. 28 were going for ...
Want to go to an Arizona Coyotes game this season?
It's going to cost you more than you might be accustomed to paying.
Due to the smaller capacity at the team's temporary home, Mullett Arena at ASU, which holds 5,000 seats, the demand and price of single-game tickets for the Coyotes is on the rise.
As of Wednesday morning, the least expensive tickets for the Coyotes' home opener against the Winnipeg Jets on Oct. 28 were going for $267 each before fees on Ticketmaster.com.
With fees they were more than $315 each.
The Coyotes announced a very limited inventory of single-game tickets for the regular season on Monday.
ESPN recently reported that the Coyotes expect to sell out every home game at ASU. The site also reported that season-ticket revenue for the team was up 50% over that at the team's former arena in Glendale, Gila River Arena.
“We have been overwhelmed by the demand for tickets to see the Coyotes play our games at Mullett Arena this season,” Coyotes President & CEO Xavier A. Gutierrez said in a statement.
He added: “Obviously, it was a top priority for us to take care of our loyal and passionate season ticket members first but we felt it was important to make a very limited number of single game tickets available to the general public so they can enjoy what we think will be one of the best game night experiences in the entire NHL."
The increase in single-game ticket prices at Mullett Arena for Coyotes games doesn't seem to be limited to the home opener.
The cheapest tickets for the team's second game at the arena were for $240 before fees as of Wednesday morning.
They cost more than $283 each with fees.
The Coyotes have priced every seat besides the ASU student section at the arena as a lower bowl seat
When the single-game tickets were announced the average ticket price at Mullett Arena was $170, but that appears to be rising with the demand to see the Coyotes in the smaller venue.
The NHL average is $154.
ASU’s student section holds around 400 seats and the Coyotes will provide special prices for students that will be around $25-50 per game.
"We know this is going to be sold out for every single game and we never had any doubt that was going to be the case," Gutierrez recently told ESPN. "We could have sold this out to our existing season-ticket base, but we didn't think that was the right approach. We want to make sure that fans who have never experienced a game could experience it. That's a very tricky thing when you've downsized capacity."
ESPN reported that the average ticket price at Gila River Arena for the Coyotes was in the $90 range.
"We're not gouging people here," Gutierrez said. "You're slightly above an NHL average now while you were well below an NHL average before. And we're in a much more centrally located area."
The Coyotes play their first six games on the road in the upcoming season from Oct. 13-25, then have a four game homestand against the Jets, New York Rangers, Florida Panthers and Dallas Stars Oct. 28-Nov. 3.
They then have a 14-game road trip from Nov. 5-Dec. 7 before returning home to face the Boston Bruins on Dec. 9.
The cheapest tickets available for the game against the Bruins on Ticketmaster as of Wednesday were for $450 each before fees ($531 each with fees).
Republic reporter Jenna Ortiz contributed to this story.
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Kansas City Chiefs' Andy Reid blames Arizona Cardinals' field for injuries in Week 1 win
The NFL has produced scandals such a Bountygate, Spygate and Deflategate.Could Sodgate be next?On Tuesday, Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid was very critical of the field inside State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona after two of his players were injured slipping on it during the Chiefs' 44-21 win over the ...
The NFL has produced scandals such a Bountygate, Spygate and Deflategate.
Could Sodgate be next?
On Tuesday, Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid was very critical of the field inside State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona after two of his players were injured slipping on it during the Chiefs' 44-21 win over the Cardinals in Sunday's NFL Week 1 game.
“It was a little loose. That's what happens sometimes when you re-sod,” Reid told reporters. “It's part of the (Harrison) Butker injury and the (Trent) McDuffie injury, and that's unfortunate. The turf picked up, and I would tell you that did have something to do with it. If it didn't, I'd tell you that, too. It's not an excuse by any means. But you all see it when you watch the tape.”
Butker, the Chiefs' kicker, slipped early in the game on a kickoff, forcing the Chiefs to turn to safety Justin Reid on some extra point attempts in the game. Reid went 1-for-2 on those attempts before Butker returned.
The kicker was able to connect on a 54-yard field goal after returning.
Chiefs cornerback Trent McDuffie also hurt his hamstring in the game while in pass coverage.
A Cardinals spokesperson later refuted Reid's claim that the playing surface had something to do with the Chiefs' injuries.
“The entire field was replaced on Monday, August 22nd — the day after the last home preseason game vs. Baltimore — so it had it almost three full weeks before the Week One game vs. Kansas City,” Mark Dalton told Pro Football Talk via text message. “That’s more than enough time for the Tifway Bermuda 419 hybrid sod to take root, especially in 109 degrees and abundant sunshine.”
Dalton continued, via PFT: “The field at State Farm Stadium is routinely ranked among the best — if not THE best — among NFL players, including in surveys conducted by the NFLPA. Like all fields, the surface at State Farm Stadium undergoes the NFL’s required testing and certification process both before and after games. Sunday it not only met but exceeded those standards.”
The Associated Press contributed to this story.
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