Arizona Coyotes rookie camp is winding down after a few days of practices and scrimmages. The young Yotes take on the young Kings tonight and Wednesday before veterans arrive and regular training camp opens later this week. Before rookie camp comes to a close, let's look back at six important camp quotes from general manager Don Maloney and head coach Dave Tippett:
- Tippett on young guys making the opening night roster: "There's maybe five or six guys that didn't play on our team last year that...really are in a position to challenge for a job. And there's probably five or six guys on our team that, if they don't play well, would be vulnerable."
- Tippett on how he determines when a young player is ready for the NHL: "When they're in the lineup, can you trust them and can you win with them?"
- Maloney on the risks of playing teenagers in the NHL: "The risks are what we've done in the past. I have yet to find a player in the history that I've been around this game that has been irreparably harmed by going back and cooking in the oven for another year. On the other side, I can talk about dozens [of players] that have stayed around, looked great in September, a little less great in October, November you're wondering 'why did we ever keep them,' December it's an absolute disaster. Now you're sending them back to juniors and they're all messed up--write their whole season off and it takes you three to four years to recover."
- Maloney on how often players not on the radar at rookie camp make a serious run for a spot on the main club: "Really rare. Honesty, I'm not sure it's ever happened, quite frankly, somebody that you wouldn't expect jumps off the map. You pretty much know where everybody's at [coming into camp]."
- Tippett on the team's roster construction to start the season: "Look at our situation last year. We missed the playoffs by two points. That first game of the year could be the two points that we miss next year, so every game is important. We don't have the luxury of saying 'let's try a few kids here or there and see how it goes.' Our first game of the year we're going to put players on the ice I think we can win with."
- Maloney on the hiring of Steve Sullivan as development coach: "We needed somebody who's going to grab hold of the players from the time they're drafted to the time we hand them over to the [AHL] team." Maloney added that Sullivan will work directly with drafted players still in the CHL.
The five players that have a real shot at making the Coyotes' opening night roster are: Max Domi, Lucas Lessio, Tyler Gaudet, Henrik Samuelsson and Tobias Rieder. Domi is a near lock to make the squad, while there is hope that one or two of the other players will make the squad as well.