Howlin' for a draft pick

Updated: Sep 23, 2020

John Chayka's sudden departure makes a little more sense now.

Chayka had a strong start to his career, but faltered this past season:


Acquired Clayton Keller and Jakob Chychrun - 2016 Draft

Traded Scott Wedgewood/Tobias Rieder for Darcy Kuemper - 2017

Traded Alex Galchenyuk for Phil Kessel - Summer 2019

Acquired Taylor Hall - Trade Deadline 2020


Chose Barrett Hayton (struggled this season) over Quinn Hughes (Calder Trophy finalist)

Tyler Steenbergen playing for the Tucson Roadrunners after a shaky start (AHL)

Coyotes haven't landed a top 3 or WC spot in Pacific Division/Western Conference

Turning Point

Things started coming to a head when the former GM was criticized as "a liar and a quitter" (according to Craig Morgan of AZ Coyotes Insider) and chose not to be involved in the contract discussion for Taylor Hall. In late July, before the Coyotes started their qualifying-round series against Nashville, Chayka terminated his contract with Arizona.

The Coyotes released a statement shortly after his resignation: (July 26, 2020)

"John Chayka has quit as the General Manager and President of Hockey Operations of the Arizona Coyotes.

The Club is disappointed in his actions and his timing as the Coyotes prepare to enter the NHL's hub city of Edmonton, where the team will begin post-season play for the first time since 2012. Chayka has chosen to quit on a strong and competitive team, a dedicated staff, and the Arizona Coyotes fans, the greatest fans in the NHL.

The Club is moving forward and has named Steve Sullivan as Interim General Manager. He as the full support of the entire organization including team ownership, executive leadership, players and coaches."

Illegal physical fitness testing of draft prospects:

Allegedly, multiple CHL teams (Ontario Hockey League, Western Hockey League and Quebec Major Junior Hockey League) have stayed in contact with Arizona regarding their players' physical testing.

The Coyotes organization have claimed that they only answered questions relating to the players' eating habits, supplement use and workout regimens during their interviews with prospects before the start of the draft.

It was also reported that several players from the USHL (United States' top junior league) were reportedly tested by their organization as well.

After some investigation, the NHL stripped the Arizona Coyotes of their 2020 second-round selection and their 2021 first-round selection.

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