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09-25-2003, 05:15 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Country: Canada
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Originally Posted by Waldo
Canucks seem to be impressed by their prospects. Marc Crawford, their coach says "It's not only the strongest group of depth players that we've had, ever. It's probably the best group of first-year players to come in, too."

They are getting much press, especially by the Canadian media and seem to be a favourite to advance far this year. So far we have to say the Coyotes are getting mixed results. No prospects are making a big impression so far, which surprises me somewhat. I was at least expecting Sjostrom and Taffe to stand out more. Hoping for some big games by some of the rookies tonite against the Canucks. I would expect that it's the last chance for most of them to make mngmnt take notice. After this game, it'll be only 3 preseason games left and I would expect them to start preparing the veterans for the season. They will probably cut down to about 25 or 26 players after tonite. As it's only been exhibition so far, it's been very hard to get a good read on this team. It looks like they are playing Bierk and Boucher on the same nights to get a good comparison. This will be the fast high tempo type game the Coyotes say they want to play. It will really expose any weaknesses in defense and in goal. I wish we could listen to the game.

Phoenix's prospects are deep. Not elite, but deep. Our best prospects appear to be at forward. Unfortunately, this is a position where the franchise has its greatest depth. Taffe and Sjostrom are the closest thing we have to prospects who could reach star status. Sjostrom still needs seasoning and Taffe has taken measures to round out his game so he can play on any line rather than just as an emergency callup on a scoring line.

Our weakest position is defense. Our top prospects are by all accounts at least a year away from making the team. Even then, is there a #1 or 2 defenseman among the bunch? We have an abundance of #3 - #6 guys in Spiller, Callahan, Forster, Jones,etc. Only Knyazev looks like he has a shot at rising to an elite category. Again though, that is likely a year or two away.

Best way to acquire superstar prospects is to tank it. For obvious reasons that type of move may cost Phoenix its franchise.

Quite frankly the coverage on the Coyotes camp is brutal. I feel like Pavlov's dog salivating over every two sentence scrap of information the local media scribes deem us fans worthy enough of receiving. I wouldn't worry too much about a lack of hype. I can understand the frustration but keep in mind we did win the prospect tournament.

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