What's Next For The Desert Dogs?

We all know for the last couple of years the phoenix coyotes have been rebuilding. After making the playoffs year after year when they first arrived, they shipped all of their players off. Is the newly built team just over the horizion?The coyotes have missed the post season the last two years. After all there moves and coaching and staff changes, it looks as though the coyotes are nearing that goal they were looking for so long ago. A young fast team that could compete in the West for many years.

The coyotes are in great shape for the salary cap, and the new rules will only help the yotes because they are full of speedy forwards such as nagy comrie Doan, and Johnson. Heres how the Coyotes look now.

Player Salary

Shane Doan $3.002 million

Petr Nedved $2.204 million

Ladislav Nagy $1.976 million

Mike Comrie $1.748 million

Sean O’Donnell $1.748 million

Brett Hull $1.71 million

Mike Johnson $1.672 million

Mike Ricci $1.52 million

Denis Gauthier $1.33 million

Cale Hulse $1.14 million

Oleg Saprykin $1.064 million

David Tanabe $950,000

Fredrik Sjostrom $817,000

Brent Johnson $760,000

Matthew Spiller $722,000

Krys Kolanos $722,000

Michael Rupp Team Option) $684,000

Boyd Devereaux $684,000

Tyson Nash $608,000

Jason Chimera $494,000

Morris and Mara will accept the offers from Mike Barnett. The coyote D is young and very skilled, Dont expect to see brad Ference coming back, and young prospect Keith Ballard will be a great player in the near future.

The coyotes salary is only 28million. This gives them room to help them lock up the most important, and needed situations for the coyotes. The number 1 goalie. Phoenix will extend Boucher, but i expect him to be backing up a veteran goalie. Rumors are the return of Sean Burke or even the return of Khabibulin. I can’t see him leaving the lighnting, so i do see a return of Burke soon.

The coyotes have great centres and are even looking at another in Modano, but you will more then likely see the Coyotes aquiring Ray Whitney before Modano. Whitney is capable of playing and has played every spot on a forward line. He has been injured alot in the past which may be a red flag to BArnett, but you may expect to see him in Phoenix.

Teemu selanee is also reported to be scouted out by the coyotes staff, i think he would be a great fit there as he has played with Ricci before, and is interested in playing behind Wayne, as many players are.

I expect the Coyote lines to look like this or something like it:

Nagy Comrie Doan

Hull Nedved Johnson

Saprykin Whitney/Kolanos Selanee/Cleary

Chimera Deveraux Ricci/Sjostrom

Mara Morris

Gauthier Tanabe

Hulse o”donnel

Burke Boucher – David Lenevu

Phoenix will also have youngsters Kyrs Kolanos and Jeff Taffe. They have lots of forwards, but may want to consider shopping around for more option on the Defense, they have a solid one, but not very many in fault of injury.

I expect to see Gretzky behind the bench to lead the coyotes to hopefully, their first playoff birth since they began to rebuild, but there goalie situation is still cloudy, any thoughts?