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Category: Arizona-Coyotes

Hockey Scout Craig Cunningham

from Matt Porter of the Boston Globe,

In his third year on the job, the routine has become pleasantly familiar.

He flies into a city in western North America, such as Denver to see pros, or Kelowna to scout juniors. He gets in a workout at the hotel. He arrives at the arena, finds his assigned seat, and pulls out his notebook, critiquing the players on the ice for the benefit of his team.

Craig Cunningham is back in the NHL, and he is grateful.

The former Bruins winger, who nearly died on the ice after suffering a heart attack before a 2016 minor league game in Tucson, now works as a scout for the Arizona Coyotes. That he is living is a highly improbable outcome, made possible by elite medical care and Cunningham’s tenacity.

continued plus more hockey topics...

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Are The Arizona Coyotes Headed To The Playoffs?

Dan Rosen of NHL.com answers questions from the fans.

What team do you see being the biggest surprise of 2019-20? It can be positive or negative.

The Arizona Coyotes will make the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The addition of right wing Phil Kessel gives them a legitimate go-to, impact scorer, a threat they were missing last season. Clayton Keller has been through highs and lows in his first two NHL seasons. The forward will figure it out this season and I think he'll score 20-30 goals and get 60-70 points. Nick Schmaltz will give the Coyotes a speed element at center they didn't have in the second half of last season after he sustained a season-ending knee injury Dec. 30 by helping them move the puck up the ice quickly. He can carry it into the zone himself and make plays off the rush, which will help Kessel too. Arizona scored 2.55 goals per game last season, 28th in the NHL. Its offense is better this season and its defense hasn't taken a hit. Provided they stay healthy, the Coyotes will score enough to make the playoffs. Last season they missed by four points allowing 2.68 goals per game, tied for fifth with the St. Louis Blues.

more questions and answers...

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Oliver Ekman-Larsson Considered Day-To-Day With Undisclosed Injury

from Richard Morin of the Arizona Republic,

Coyotes President of Hockey Operations and General Manager John Chayka pulled reporters aside on Friday — the club's first organized skating day of training camp — and announced that Ekman-Larsson was day-to-day after undergoing an offseason procedure to repair a previous injury....

n typical NHL fashion, no further details surrounding Ekman-Larsson's injury were disclosed, although he did skate on Friday. We also know Ekman-Larsson played through a knee injury last season, and was attacked by a family dog over the summer....

The strangest part, however, were Chayka's cryptic comments relating to his captain's status. When asked if the injury was directly related to last season's knee ailment, Chayka offered this:

“In some ways, yes; in some ways, no," Chayka said. "It’s just something that’s been nagging him for a number of years now. Just an opportunity for him to clean it up and get ready for the season, so he’s 100 percent healthy and strong, so he’s got no concerns heading into the season.”


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The Growing Hockey Market In Arizona

GLENDALE, ARIZONA --- USA Hockey recently announced participation numbers throughout the country for the 2018-19 season and once again, the data confirmed that hockey continues to thrive in Arizona.

Arizona ranked second amongst all other U.S. NHL markets in total growth percentage over the past five years. In addition, Arizona ranked first in total percentage growth for female hockey players and first for total eight and under hockey participation percentage over the past five years.

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Clayton Keller Signs An Eight-Year Extension With The Arizona Coyotes

GLENDALE, ARIZONA - Arizona Coyotes President of Hockey Operations and General Manager John Chayka announced today that the Coyotes have signed forward Clayton Keller to an eight-year contract extension through the 2027-28 season. As per Club policy, terms of the contract were not disclosed.

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Evening Line- Craig Cunningham

“I’m getting healthier and healthier. It’s a matter of getting the right angles (with the prosthetics and the skate blade). And I’m trying to save some miles on the leg right now. Last year, I think I pushed myself too hard and I eventually had to go back in for surgery. I kept going at it and I kept dealing with the pain, and it finally festered out of control.

“I am trying to sort through whether coaching is the ultimate goal. Coaching is a lot of miles on the leg, a lot of standing all the time. And I’ve enjoyed the scouting and I’m learning a lot about the business side of hockey and the operations side of hockey and my interest is growing.

“The Arizona Coyotes have been very good to me. They treated me extremely well and gave me a great opportunity. It’s a huge privilege to be involved in the NHL and I’m certainly not going to take a job like that for granted. A lot of people want one and they’re tough to get.”

-Craig Cunningham, now a scout for the Coyotes.  Steve Ewen of the Vancouver Province has more.

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Season Preview - Arizona Coyotes

from Adam Kimelman of NHL.com,

NHL.com is providing in-depth roster, prospect and fantasy analysis for each of its 31 teams throughout August. Today, the Arizona Coyotes.

Phil Kessel could be the missing piece for the Arizona Coyotes in their quest to reach the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The Coyotes finished four points behind the Colorado Avalanche for the second wild card into the playoffs from the Western Conference last season. Arizona scored 209 goals, tied for the third-fewest in the League, and its leading goal scorers were Brad Richardson and Alex Galchenyuk, each with 19.

Kessel, who was acquired with defenseman prospect Dane Birks and a fourth-round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft in a trade with the Pittsburgh Penguins for Galchenyuk and defenseman prospect Pierre-Olivier Joseph on June 29, has scored at least 20 goals in 11 straight seasons, including six seasons with at least 30 goals. The Coyotes haven't had a 30-goal scorer since Radim Vrbata scored 35 in 2011-12.


added 9:41am, video preview is below...

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Afternoon Line- Alex Meruelo, The New Owner Of The Arizona Coyotes

added 5:58pm,


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Alex Meruelo Is The New Majority Owner Of The Arizona Coyotes

GLENDALE, ARIZONA - The Arizona Coyotes today announced that businessman Alex Meruelo has purchased the controlling interest in the team from Andrew Barroway. The closing of the transaction makes Meruelo, 55, the new Majority Owner, Chairman and Governor of the Coyotes and the only Hispanic controlling owner of a National Hockey League club.

"This is an incredible moment for me and my entire family," said Meruelo. "The Arizona Coyotes team is poised to do great things on and off the ice. I look forward to helping hockey continue to thrive in the desert, and I am committed to providing our passionate fans, loyal partners and the entire State of Arizona with a team they can be proud of for years to come."

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All Is Good With The Phil Kessel Trade To Arizona

Yes it is the summer, hockey news is very slow and I will keep you posted on any real news that comes about.

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from Julia Stumbaugh of azcentral,

In the two weeks since the Kessel trade, analysts have had time to evaluate what this off-season will mean for the Coyotes. In addition to Kessel, the Coyotes have added center Carl Soderberg and made a few other depth signings.

The addition of an 82-point winger in Kessel makes the Coyotes one of the most successful teams in the league this off-season, but he still might not be the final missing piece that the offense-starved team is looking for.

Through the first week of free agency, Sportsnet's Luke Fox ranked the Coyotes as having the 12th-best off-season in the league so far:

"A few more goals and the 2018-19 Coyotes make the playoffs. Enter Phil Kessel, whose 27 goals and 82 points last season immediately make him Arizona’s deadliest weapon. The Yotes didn’t have a 20-goal scorer or a 50-point man. Coach Rick Tocchet is the Phil whisperer. Arizona has a chance to be sneaky good."

read on

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com


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