Photo: Max Domi, the Coyotes’ top pick in 2013, ranks in the top five in the OHL in scoring for the London Knights (courtesy of Aaron Bell/OHL Images)
The Coyotes system has shifted this spring because of the graduation of Michael Stone as well as the emergence of Connor Murphy and Jordan Szwarz.
Photo: Selected sixth overall in 2009, Oliver Ekman-Larsson has developed into a top-pairing defenseman and ice-time leader for the Coyotes (courtesy of Derik Hamilton/Icon SMI)
The Phoenix Coyotes changed in the 2009 offseason. Before, they were a mediocre, punch line of a club that could always be found toward the bottom of the standings. After, they were playoff fixtures, culminating in a deep run to the Western Conference Finals in 2011-12.
Photo: Chris Brown has been one of the top forwards for the Portland Pirates in 2013-14, which has earned him time with the NHL club (courtesy of Norm Hall/NHLI via Getty Images)
Legal squabbles between the Board of Trustees of Portland, Maine’s Cumberland County Civic Center and the ownership group of their primary tenant, the Portland Pirates, have relegated the team to the northern reaches of Maine for the foreseeable future. Meanwhile, on the ice, the Phoenix Coyotes AHL affiliate finds themselves in the bottom half of the Eastern Conference standings.
Photo: Henrik Samuelsson is the leading scorer of one of the WHL’s most potent lines, combining with Curtis Lazar and Mitchell Moroz to the lead the attack for the Edmonton Oil Kings (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)
Teams define themselves by U.S. Thanksgiving, according to conventional wisdom. This rule of thumb could apply to players, as well. By late November, there are no more predictions or expectations. Prospects are what their performance says they are.
Photo: Rookie pro Lucas Lessio broke camp with the Coyotes but was assigned to AHL Portland after three NHL games (courtesy of Norm Hall/NHLI via Getty Images)
The Phoenix Coyotes may have the most unbalanced prospect pool in the league. On defense, they have more legitimate players than places to put them. At forward, they may be forced to convert their young centers to address the scarcity of talent on both wings.