The Arizona Coyotes are in the middle of a full-scale rebuild under first-year general manager John Chayka, and that means plenty of new faces and young players making their way into the lineup over the course of the season.
Entering play on Saturday night against the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Coyotes have already used nine players this season age 21 or younger, with six of them making their NHL debuts.
That list includes Dylan Strome, Lawson Crouse, Jakob Chychrun, Brandon Perlini, Anthony DeAngelo, and Christian Dvorak.
On Saturday night against the Lightning, they will be adding yet another name to that list when Christian Fischer, the team’s second-round pick (No. 32 overall) in 2015, makes his NHL debut.
He talked about his debut on Saturday before the game, via Sarah McLellan of the Arizona Republic.
“It’s obviously a dream come true,” Fischer said. “I think that’s what everyone says, but this is what you’ve been working for ever since you were a little kid. It’s honestly just a dream. That’s pretty cool to make it a reality today. Just gotta make the most of it but for sure going to enjoy it. It’s been a long time coming, a lot of hard work. I couldn’t be more excited.”
According to the team he is going to begin on the third line alongside Jamie McGinn and Alexander Burmistrov.
Before Saturday Fischer has spent the entire season playing for Tuscon Roadrunners in the American Hockey League where he was averaging more than a point per game (32 points in 31 games) and was second on the team in scoring even though he is still only 19 years old and playing in his first year of pro hockey. That performance so far has earned him an opportunity with the big club.
With such a young roster there have been some major growing pains for the Coyotes this season, entering Saturday’s game with the second worst record in the NHL and at times being overmatched. But given how much talent has been added to the organization over the past couple of years, specifically as it relates to Max Domi, Strome, Dvorak and Chychrun, there is a ton of potential on this roster and some real hope for the future.