It has been a rough go for the Coyotes as of late having lost eight straight games heading into today’s action. However, GM Bill Armstrong dismissed any notion of head coach Andre Tourigny being in jeopardy of losing his job, telling PHNX’s Craig Morgan that he won’t be making a coaching change. Arizona was in a Wild Card spot when the calendar flipped to 2024 but now is ten points behind St. Louis for the final playoff spot. Armstrong hasn’t hidden the fact that the plan was for a long rebuild process and while it appears the Coyotes are likely to miss the playoff for the fourth straight season (12th straight if you don’t count the expanded 2020-21 postseason), Tourigny is still viewed as the right coach to help them take that next step.
More from the Western Conference:
- It will still be another week or so before the Sharks learn exactly how long Tomas Hertl will be out for, notes Curtis Pashelka of The Mercury News. The 30-year-old has missed the last three weeks after undergoing surgery to remove cartilage from his left knee. While it has been a particularly rough year for most players in San Jose, Hertl has fared relatively well this season, all things considered. Despite missing six games, he still leads the Sharks in scoring with 34 points through 48 games. Pashelka notes that there is optimism that Hertl will be able to return at some point before the regular season comes to an end in April but with San Jose so far out of playoff contention, it wouldn’t be shocking to see him get shut down for the season altogether.
- Flames winger Jakob Pelletier is making progress in his recovery from an upper-body injury that has caused him to miss the last two games but he isn’t expected to play on Monday versus Winnipeg, relays Sportsnet 960’s Pat Steinberg (Twitter link). The 22-year-old has been limited to just four games so far this season (plus four more in the minors) due to injury. However, it appears this one won’t keep him out for much longer.
- The Canucks have identified Teddy Blueger as one of their pending unrestricted free agents that they’d like to re-sign, CHEK’s Rick Dhaliwal reported in a recent segment on Sportsnet 650 (audio link). The 29-year-old inked a one-year, $1.9MM deal with them back in July and has done well, picking up 22 points in 42 games while being one of their top-used penalty killers. That said, contract discussions have not started as of yet and Dhaliwal feels that Vancouver may wait until late in the year to start discussing new deals with the UFA’s they’d like to keep.