Thursday, 10 May 2012

The Phoenix Coyotes

The Phoenix Coyotes have advanced to the Western Conference Finals in the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs, to the surprise of many. After narrowly winning the Pacific Division, lots of "experts" picked the Blackhawks to beat the Coyotes in the first round. Carried by goalie Mike Smith, the Coyotes have often been outplayed and out shot, but keep squeaking out wins. Phoenix had the worst attendance in the league throughout out the season averaging 12 420 at about a 72.5% rate. Now that the playoffs are underway, every game has been sold out. The team has had a bad ownership situation for a few years now, and were almost moved to Winnipeg last season. Now, a prospective owner is considering purchasing the club, and the future looks a bit brighter. 

This really angers me that a team with a horrible fan base in the regular season makes it this far in the playoffs. There are so many more deserving franchises. I do, however, like the team that is not made up of any superstars. Shane Doan has been with the Coyotes since they moved from Winnipeg, and now the captain is probably the most well-known player on the team. Keith Yandle is an all-star defence-man, but still does not get the recognition he deserves. Smith is a journeyman goalie who has travelled through many teams. Most of the players are after thoughts and undervalued in most places. The chemistry of this team is amazing. 

It will be interesting to see how the rest of the playoffs end. I wish there were some Canadian teams left, or large hockey markets. If Phoenix haven't been sold and win the Stanley Cup, does NHL Commissioner Gary Bettmann get to hold the cup because the NHL owns the team? 

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