The Arizona Coyotes' penalty kill was dreadful last season. This afternoon they took a major step towards addressing it.
The Coyotes announced Tuesday afternoon that they had acquired center Boyd Gordon from the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for forward Lauri Korpikoski. The move comes on the heels of a trade that sent Sam Gagner to Philadelphia in exchange for Nicklass Grossmann.
A quick look at Boyd Gordon's comparative stats shows exactly why the Coyotes brought him in.
Gordon is a shot blocker and shot suppressor extraordinaire. His work ethic and gutsy play on the penalty kill earned him many a fan in the two seasons he played in Arizona. In particular, on efforts like this:
Korpikoski is a speedy forward that for whatever reason has just been unable to regain the productivity he had prior to the lockout, when he posted two consecutive seasons of 37 points or more. Since the NHL resumed back in 2013, Korpikoski has totaled just 21 goals and 36 assists in 169 games.
Moving Korpikoski for Gordon also gives the Coyotes another spot on the wing to either add a forward in free agency or give one of their younger players more ice time. All in all, this move allows the Coyotes to address a major weakness on defense while allowing their younger prospects more chances to make the parent club.