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Solid Future Goaltenders For Arizona After Trade

future goaltenders for arizona Photo credit to Andrea via Flickr


Solid Future Goaltenders For Arizona After Trade Deadline

So far, this week has been slow and steady for the NHL. With many teams in potential contention for the playoffs, there is a lot of room for player moves and roster changes. The trade deadline is looming and that has made some teams desperate–while others are being cautious and methodical. An early move which has gone under the radar is the trade between the Los Angeles Kings and the Arizona Coyotes.

The Arizona Coyotes have had a dismal year. This past offseason led to the departure of long-time workhorse Mike Smith, and what leadership the Coyotes had in net left as well. This young and promising team turned to Antti Raanta as their man in the race for future goaltenders as a result of Smith heading to Calgary.

Future Plans?

As this season has created a near-complete elimination from the playoffs for the Coyotes, what’s next? The young and quick team needs to evaluate exactly what to do for the future. This trade deadline has shown strides in the right direction for Arizona, as they have solidified their future goaltenders.

Goalies are a premium in the league and having a promising young duo in net after the deadline is a great foundation for the ‘Yotes. Through the moves made so far, Arizona is setting themselves up to be successful this offseason. The most notable move has been a trade early in the deadline with Los Angeles.


On Feb. 21, the Los Angeles Kings and the Arizona Coyotes agreed to a trade. The players involved would not be superstars, but solid team members. Here’s how the trade broke down:

Arizona Coyotes              –               Los Angeles Kings

                   Send:     Scott Wedgewood (G)            Send:     Darcy Kuemper (G)

                                     Tobias Reider (C)


Arizona Coyotes

Both teams came out on top of this trade. The Arizona Coyotes are floundering this season despite average expectations to slightly miss the playoffs before the season began. Many critics and experts alike have compared this season’s Coyotes with the historically poor Colorado Avalanche of last season. With this failure to perform to any expectation, the team has fallen to the bottom of the NHL yet again. A harsh rebuild is necessary in order to even consider playoff competition in years to come. After this is thought through it would make sense for the Coyotes to be sellers at the deadline. The players which Arizona gave away are not considered superstars, but the move is definitely a step in the right direction for the team.

Goalie Darcy Kuemper is the only player whom the Coyotes received. A bright goalie who has found his home on a few teams, Kuemper is full of potential. After serving as a backup for Dubnyk in Minnesota, Kuemper was signed by Los Angeles this past offseason. He hit the free agent market after the Wild didn’t elect to pursue him. After this signing, Kuemper took the reigns and hasn’t looked back. He has been impressive this year, putting up a .930 Sv% and a 2.16 GAA over 15 games. Kuemper was previously signed to a 1-year $650,000 deal by the Kings this past offseason but was signed to a two-year contract extension by the Coyotes after the trade. He has great potential and creates a duo of future goaltenders for Arizona with Raanta.

Departing the Coyotes

First in the trade is young goalie Scott Wedgewood. The 25-year old Canadian has only 22 career games under his belt, and his play has not been outstanding. His solid goaltending in the face of poor defense is a trait which was appealing to Arizona in the first place. However, after this trade he did not find a good home with Arizona–only putting up a 3.45 GAA and a .893 Sv% over this time. His home could be found in Los Angeles–giving them another option in their future goaltenders.

Next is Tobias Reider. He is a young, talented forward who has good potential. This year Reider has amassed a meager point production, but given the right environment, he could thrive. Before the trade to Los Angeles, he had 19 points over 58 games. Only eight goals had come off his stick, and 11 assists had been added to his season totals. After the trade, he already has a goal with Los Angeles after two games played.

Potential Targets

This upcoming offseason is full of star power in the Unrestricted Free Agent market. Such names as John Tavares and John Carlson are on the line for many teams who are in need of signings. Here are two good targets for the Coyotes to pursue:

Patric Hornqvist

At 31 years old, he is not like the young guns around him. Hornqvist wouldn’t beat any of the players in a speed battle. However, Hornqvist could be a valuable asset to the growing Coyotes with his veteran presence and his experience with the Penguins. He won’t lead your team in scoring, but will provide consistent, gritty play. His style would be a great complement to the young, fast generation.

Evander Kane

Kane is a good option for the Coyotes offseason. His 2017-18 season is becoming one of his best of recent years despite being on the struggling Sabres. After his move to the quick and aggressive San Jose Sharks, his potential only increases. The 26-year old’s tough and sturdy play will fit in nicely with the likes of Domi and Keller.