Coyotes looking to Detroit for inspiration

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The Phoenix (soon to be Arizona) Coyotes are coming up on the one-year anniversary of the Glendale City Council 4-3 vote to approve a 15-year lease agreement for Jobing.com Arena that led to the team being bought from the league.

That gave the Coyotes a fighting chance to prove that an NHL franchise can survive in Glendale, but they need the on-ice product to improve first after they fell short of the postseason in back-to-back campaigns. Coyotes GM Don Maloney is looking to the Detroit Red Wings as he attempts to orchestrate that turnaround.

“That’s our model,” Maloney said, per the Detroit Free Press. “They make the playoffs every year, they’re exciting to watch, they sell out their building every night and have a strong history of success.”

Certainly the Los Angeles Kings and Chicago Blackhawks have been better than Detroit over the last five years, but it’s easy to see why a model that puts an emphasis on sustainability would appeal to the Coyotes after years of uncertainty. Detroit undergoes transitional periods like the one it endured in 2013-14 and will continue next season, but the team has managed to avoid traditional rebuilds like the one that the Blackhawks went through en route to establishing the core that’s led them to where they are today.