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Coyotes sign Bjugstad, trade for Nemeth in ongoing rebuild

After the NHL Draft, free agency and other offseason moves, is examining where each team stands in preparation for the 2022-23 regular season, which starts Oct. 7. Today, the Arizona Coyotes:

2021-22season: 25-50-7, 8th in Central Division; did not qualify for Stanley Cup Playoffs

key arrivals

Nick Bjugstad,F: The 30-year-old signed a one-year contract July 13. He had 13 points (seven goals, six assists) in 57 games for the Minnesota Wild last season. … Troy StecherD: The 28-year-old signed a one-year contract July 13. He split last season with the Detroit Red Wings and Los Angeles Kings and had three points (one goal, two assists) in 29 regular-season games and four points (two goals, two assists) in four Stanley Cup Playoff games. … Josh BrownD: The 28-year-old signed a two-year contract July 13. He had six assists in 52 games for the Ottawa Senators and Boston Bruins last season. … Patrick NemethD: The Coyotes acquired the 30-year-old in a trade with the New York Rangers on July 13. He had seven points (two goals, five assists) in 63 games last season. … Zack Cassian,F: The Coyotes acquired the 31-year-old from the Edmonton Oilers on July 7. Kassian had 19 points (six goals, 13 assists) in 58 regular-season games last season and four points (two goals, two assists) in 16 playoff games .

Key departures

Phil Kessel,F: The unrestricted free agent was third on the Coyotes last season with 52 points (eight goals, 44 assists) in 82 games. … Anton StralmannD: The UFA was second among Coyotes defensemen with 23 points (eight goals, 15 assists) in 74 games last season. … Alex Galchenyuk,F: Also to UFA, Galchenyuk had 21 points (six goals, 15 assists) in 60 games. … Louie Eriksson,F: The UFA had 19 points (three goals, 16 assists) in 73 games last season.

On the cusp

Jack McBain,F: The 22-year-old signed a two-year, entry-level contract with the Coyotes on March 23. He had three points (two goals, one assist) in 10 games after making his NHL debut April 12. … Victor SoderstromD: The No. 11 pick in the 2019 NHL Draft played 16 games for Arizona last season and did not have a point. The 21-year-old also played four games in 2020-21 and had two points (one goal, one assist). … Matthias Maccelli,F: The 21-year-old played 23 games with the Coyotes last season and had six points (one goal, five assists). He had a team-leading 57 points (14 goals, 43 assists) in 47 games for Tucson of the American Hockey League. … Jan Jenik,F: The 21-year-old had three points (two goals, one assist) in 13 games for Arizona last season. He also had 47 points (17 goals, 30 assists) in 51 AHL games. … Ivan Prosvetov,G: The 23-year-old started three games for the Coyotes last season and went 0-2-1, allowing 13 goals on 104 shots (.875 save percentage). He was the No. 1 goalie for Tucson and was 15-22-5 with a 3.66 GAA and .880 save percentage in 45 games. … Nathan Smith,F: The 23-year-old had four points (two goals, two assists) in 10 games for the Coyotes last season after signing with them following his junior season at Minnesota State, when he had 50 points (19 goals, 31 assists) in 38 games. … Dylan Guenther,F: The 19-year-old who was the No. 9 pick in the 2021 NHL Draft had 91 points (45 goals, 46 assists) in 59 games for Edmonton of the Western Hockey League last season.

Video: ARI@MIN: McBain deflects in puck for his 1st NHL goal

What they still need

Depth and time. The Coyotes are rebuilding. They need to continue to develop their young players to fill depth throughout their lineup as they build to become a playoff contender.

they said it

“There might come a time where we need a guy to play right away, but we don’t want to really be in that scenario. We’d rather have our kids go through the process and earn it. In the next few years, you’re going to see some young, talented players and some hope being [introduced] in the organization.” — general manager Bill Armstrong to the Coyotes website

fantasy focus

Jakob Chychrun leads NHL defensemen in 5-on-5 goals per 60 minutes (minimum 30 games) over the past two seasons combined (0.54) and is tied with Darnell Nurse (Edmonton Oilers) for sixth in goals at the position in that span (25 in 103 games). Chychrun remains a top 40 fantasy option on defense given his track record (NHL career-high 41 points in 56 games in 2020-21) and top 75 overall player in keeper and dynasty leagues. With exposure to valuable forwards Clayton Keller and Nick Schmaltz, Chychrun is a bounce-back candidate after being limited to 47 games last season because of a lower-body injury. He can still reach a higher gear considering he hasn’t played more than 68 games in any of his first six NHL seasons. –Anna Dua

Video: ARI@TOR: Chychrun hammers one-timer in for OT winner

projected line-up

Nick SchmaltzTravis BoydClayton Keller

Lawson Crouse — Nick Bjugstad — Zack Kassian

Nick RichieBarrett HaytonChristian Fisher

Liam O’Brien –Jack McBain– Andrew Ladd

Shayne GostisbehereDysin May

Jakob Chychrun — Troy Stecher

JJ Moser –Josh Brown

Karel Vejmelka

Ivan Prosvetov


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