Tag: Joe Vitale

St Louis Blues v Arizona Coyotes

Coyotes’ Vitale leaves game vs. Flyers with an upper body injury

Arizona Coyotes forward Joe Vitale suffered an upper body injury during tonight’s game in Philadelphia and will not return.

Vitale suffered the injury late in the first period. He played just 4:39 while winning 5 of 8 face-offs.

The 29-year-old had three goals and six points to go along with 28 penalty minutes and a minus-6 rating in 44 games entering tonight’s action.

Arizona is already without Mikkel Boedker, who had his spleen removed prior to the All-Star break.

If Vitale’s injury forces him to miss time, the Coyotes would be down to 12 forwards on its active roster.

New owner Barroway bracing Arizona for rebuild

PNI coyotes main 0102

Recently, Coyotes GM Don Maloney unveiled the vision Andrew Barroway — who took over as Arizona’s majority owner last month — has for the future of the team.

“I spent the weekend with Andy at the All-Star Game and really got a sense of who he is and what he’s all about,” Maloney said, per Fox Sports Arizona. “He really does want to do this right.

“He wants to build for the long term and he understands that there is some suffering involved to do what you need to do to build a winner that is sustainable.”

Acknowledgement of potential suffering is intriguing. Remember when former Sabres GM Darcy Regier alluded to it in Buffalo during the start of Buffalo’s rebuild?

“It probably needs an understanding from our fan base that what Terry [Pegula, Sabres owner] is asking of us is to try a lot of things,” Regier said in the spring of ’13. “He is in search of creating a Stanley Cup champion.

“It may require some suffering.”

Regier, of course, was fired just a few months after making that statement, only to resurface last July in — surprise! — Arizona, where he’s currently embedded as assistant GM.

At this point, all signs point to a major rebuild in the desert. Beyond the quotes above, Arizona has just five players under contract beyond 2015-16 (Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Mike Smith, Martin Hanzal, Lauri Korpikoski, Joe Vitale) and a slew of young prospects looking to make the leap, led by World Juniors standout Max Domi.

This makes the Mar. 2 deadline all the more intriguing. The Barroway transaction closed quicker than some speculated (reports suggested it wouldn’t be done until the end of the season), which has afforded Maloney an earlier opportunity to figure out what ownership wants, and how to execute it. The names of Antoine Vermette and Keith Yandle have been prominent in rumors and the club has another chip to play in veteran d-man Zbynek Michalek, a UFA at season’s end.

Some think it would behoove Arizona to re-sign some of these players, especially a productive veteran presence like Vermette. But based on the message Maloney’s getting from Barroway, spending money doesn’t sound like it’s a key part of the plan.

“We want to stay as flexible as possible,” he explained. “If we need to grow this thing and run at a low payroll for a couple years, so be it.”


Jones, Monahan lead Flames to fourth straight win against the Coyotes

Sean Monahan #23 of the Calgary Flames is congratulated by his teammates after scoring a goal during the first period against the Columbus Blue Jackets on October 4, 2013 at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio.
(October 3, 2013 - Source: Kirk Irwin/Getty Images North America)

David Jones and Sean Monahan each had a goal and an assist and Joni Ortio made 27 saves as the Calgary Flames handed the Arizona Coyotes a third straight loss.

Arizona has also lost four straight to the Calgary Flames.

Mikael Backlund and Mark Giordano had Calgary’s other goals while Dennis Wideman and Lance Bouma each had to assists in the win.

Mikkel Boedker had the lone Arizona goal and Mike Smith made 21 saves in the loss.

Joe Vitale had an excellent chance to give the Coyotes a 2-1 lead with less than seven minutes remaining in the second, but Ortio managed to reach out to make the save.

The two teams meet for a fifth and final time on April 9.