| Dave Vest |
We spoke about Monday’s roster moves
. While none were extremely surprising, a few piqued my interest enough to ask Maloney to explain why they were made. Here’s the scoop on:
► Brett MacLean:
“I thought Brett had a slow start to this camp but then played well in the preseason games,” Maloney told me. “However, when you start looking at our right side, you start with our captain Shane Doan
and then you have Radim Vrbata
and Lee Stempniak. It’s a pretty talented group that he has to be ahead of. Brett’s close. I think he’ll have a chance to play for us at some point this year. He’s just not quite there yet.”
► Alexandre Picard:
“Alex, and Ryan Hollweg for that matter, came into camp and worked very hard,” Maloney said. “But once you start looking at our winger position it would take a Herculean effort for one of those guys to knock out an incumbent right now. But I think Alex showed who he is and what he is. He was probably the most urgent player we had in the preseason games, meaning he knew he had to do something every shift to get noticed and he got noticed. For Alex, it’s a matter of doing that down in San Antonio and being ready because injuries do happen and if we need somebody to bring energy and grit to our lineup he’ll be one of the first guys we’ll call.”
► Brandon Gormley:
“I thought he played very well,” Maloney said. “You can see his intelligence. He needs to be stronger and another year of junior hockey will be good for him. I thought he had a terrific camp.”
► Michael Stone:
“I thought he got better and better as camp went on. That’s really encouraging.”
Wojtek Wolski was back playing winger at Monday’s practice, and while he still may get some more time playing center during preseason games on Tuesday and/or Wednesday, it sounds as if he’ll likely play wing this season instead.
“We’ll see how that goes,” Head Coach Dave Tippett said. “ …We’ve had Turris (and he) has played very well and Wellwood has played very well and we have three other centers… Wolski was all right at center but… if Wolski is going to play center, Turris or Wellwood - one of those or both of those guys - would probably be on the outside looking in. This way we still have an opportunity to have Wolski in the lineup and possibly add Turris or Wellwood.”
► The Coyotes invited defenseman Shane Hnidy to training camp for a tryout a few weeks ago. Unfortunately for Hnidy, he suffered a significant shoulder injury during camp that will require surgery.
► The Coyotes will take 21 skaters and three goalies when they depart for the Czech Republic on Sunday. Maloney said Al Montoya, who was sent to the AHL on Monday, is the leading candidate to be the third goalie.
► A reader asked me if the Emmy Awards in the background of the post-game videos we've been producing this preseason are mine. Sadly, they are not. They belong to Gannon Hubler, the pro who shoots and edits those videos and many others you see on phoenixcoyotes.com.
Reach Dave Vest at firstname.lastname@example.org
and follow him on twitter @davest4yotes.