With the 2019 NHL Entry Level Draft approaching the Arizona Coyotes have a few options. This year they have the fourteenth overall pick, which is fairly low when looking at their other recent first-round picks. General Manager John Chayka has a history of trading first-round picks, and a middle of the round pick may be worth more as a trade piece compared if he so choices.
The Coyotes biggest need going forward into next season is increased offense. The team finished 28th in goals for and their power play was ranked 26th in the league. No matter who they select a fourteenth overall pick they will likely to take time to develop, and odds are they won’t be playing in the NHL for a few seasons at least. If the Coyotes want to improve their offense for next season they may be better off trading their pick for an active player.
GM Chayka has traded a first-round pick twice in three of his drafts as a General Manager. He used the seventh overall pick in 2016 to draft Clayton Keller but he traded the New York Rangers’ twentieth overall pick that year to move up the draft to get Jakob Chyrchrun. In 2017 the Coyotes had the seventh overall pick again, which was sent to the Rangers along with Tony DeAngelo to acquire center Derek Stepan and goaltender Antti Raanta.
It is important to note that Chayka has yet to be trade away his sole first-round pick, he either traded up or had an another pick. If GM Chayka continues the trend it would be another trade up, or possibly a trade down if he isn’t overly thrilled with who was available at fourteenth. This may be the best case scenario, even if the Coyotes are looking to improve next season they shouldn’t trade away their future to marginally improve their present.
While it isn’t always immediate, first-round picks are generally pretty likely to make the NHL, and a fourteenth overall pick has a good chance of being a top nine or NHL regular. The Coyotes’ prospect pools isn’t that highly ranked and a review from last offseason of teams’ under 25 core has the Coyotes ranked eleventh. If the Coyotes want to be successful and stay successful they are going to need to need to restock their prospect pool and continue to take the necessary time to grow and develop their prospects.
If the right player were to become available, a proven goalscorer who can immediately make the team better, we know Chayka wouldn’t be afraid to pull the trigger on the deal. But while the Coyotes have traded first-round picks in the past, it was only done under specific circumstances. Since they only have one first-round pick this year it would likely require a really big piece to get the Coyotes to give up their pick.
What do you think, do you think the Coyotes should trade their pick or retain it and draft a prospect? And if they do trade it will the Rangers somehow be involved again?
Will the Coyotes trade their first round pick this season?
This poll is closed
Yes, they will move up or down
Yes, they will trade it for a player
No, they will retain and draft a player