Despite the 10 straight regulation losses and 20-37-7 record, not to mention the recent trades of key veterans Antoine Vermette and Keith Yandle, Arizona Coyotes co-owner Anthony LeBlanc doesn’t believe his team is too far from a return to respectability, and is “pretty excited about where this franchise is going.”
“Are we going to win a Cup next year? Well, I mean we certainly hope to,” LeBlanc told Sportsnet’s Hockey Central today, per Nichols on Hockey.
“But we do think that this is a 2-3 year reset where we will have a real possibility and a real championship team.”
That’s an aggressive timeline, for sure. While the Coyotes have some good prospects in Max Domi, Anthony Duclair and others, they’re not the only team that can say that.
The wildcard is, of course, the upcoming draft lottery. Win it and get Connor McDavid, that changes things significantly. The Coyotes, just one point ahead of 29th-place Edmonton, also have a shot at Jack Eichel.
“I think the point is we don’t think it’s going to take 3-4 years,” LeBlanc said. “We do think – and I was with coach [Dave] Tippett last night and we talked about it – he thinks that this team next year will be significantly better than it is this year.”