Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Larionov to Yotes Rumor Shmushed

Is "The Professor" mulling a comeback?
Think back to your college days. I'm sure you too remember the old line, "Go ugly early." I was pleased to read David Vest's piece today in the Bottom line, the Coyotes weren't looking to, "go old early." Nope, no truth to the Igor Larionov rumor. That's a relief. The Yotes are already old and slow enough. They might however want to hire him as wine steward for the Glendale Arena's club level and sky box customers. Gotta get those Scottsdalians re-energized about hockey somehow.

Here's a guy who might be an ideal fit with these Yotes. I think he'd work out great on a line with Pavel "Krispy Kreme" Brendl and Ladislav Nagy.

Listened to NHL Live on the way to work today. The boys broke down the state of the Coyotes pretty nicely. The future no-lookie good. Under-achievers and downsiders in the big show, bupkis in the system. Here' a look at their last 11 years of first round picks. Let's play count the legit NHLers:

1996: Dan Focht (11th overall) & Daniel Briere (24th overall)
1997: None
1998: Patrick DesRochers (14th overall)
1999: Scott Kelman (15th overall) & Kirill Safronov (19th overall)
2000: Krystofer Kolanos (19th overall)
2001: Fredrik Sjostrom (11th overall)
2002: Jakub Koreis (19th overall) & Ben Eager (23rd overall)
2003: None
2004: Blake Wheeler (5th overall)
2005: Martin Hanzal (17th overall)
2006: Peter Mueller (8th overall) & Chris Summers (29th overall)

I count Briere and maybe Sjostrom. I think Wheeler was 13 when they drafted him, so he and Mueller are still nuggets.

Time to blow it up. Make moves that shed guys with greater than one year contracts and bring in prospects or players with one year contracts. Wheel and deal at deadline time, then clean house. Too bad there's not an Ovechkin or Crosby in the '07 draft. It might be the Yotes year to be first on the clock. To some extent the Coyotes are victims of perpetual 500 play. The Penguins and Canes had to really crash before they could start turning the corner.

H/T to Spector for the lead on the Vest article.

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