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Arizona Coyotes Preseason Countdown: 44 Days

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Soon after the Coyotes bought out center Mike Ribeiro they went out and traded for Sam Gagner and another guy from the Tampa Bay Lightning. Today we take a look at the other guy, forward B.J. Crombeen the man who wears number 44 for the Arizona Coyotes.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

On June 29, 2014, the Arizona Coyotes wanted replace the production of the recently bought out center Mike Ribeiro. According to reportsEdmonton Oilers' GM Craig MacTavish had contacted Coyotes' GM Don Maloney about moving Sam Gagner. A deal seemed very close to happening, however MacTavish made a deal with the Tampa Bay Lightning's Steve Yzerman instead. Upon hearing the deal, Maloney called Tampa Bay and soon a new deal was in place for the Yotes to acquire not only Gagner but also B.J. Crombeen, who the Coyotes had been interested in for the past few months.

Brandon James Crombeen was originally drafted by the Dallas Stars 54th overall in the 2003 Entry Level Draft. Crombeen was drafted from the Barrie Colts with expectations that he would be your typical tough bottom-six player. His penalty numbers were at least double his points in every year in the OHL. After spending a few years in the AHL, he was eventually recalled to the NHL for the first time during the 2007-08 season. He played eight regular season games and five playoff games that season.

The following year, he played 15 games with the Stars before being claimed off waivers by the St. Louis Blues, the team that his father Mike Crombeen played for from 1978-83. He went on to play 66 games with the Blues, finishing with career highs in goals (12), points (22) and penalty minutes (148) between the two teams. In his four seasons with the Blues, Crombeen played 265 games and went 26-23-49 with 515 penalty minutes.

Crombeen was ultimately traded to the Lightning in 2012 along with a 2014 fifth round pick for Tampa Bay's fourth round picks in 2013 and 2014. His lockout-shortened season with the Lightning saw him finish 1-7-8 with 112 penalty minutes and last year he played 55 games finishing 3-7-10.

Coyotes fans should expect typical fourth line production from Crombeen--around 10 points with most of them coming from assists, and north of 100 penalty minutes.  In many ways, he is likely going to fill the same role that Paul Bissonnette filled in the past, he is going to fight and be a hard player to play against.