GLENDALE – I had a chance to speak with Coyotes General
Manager Don Maloney during Friday’s practice and I asked
him to explain why the team recalled center Andy Miele
from the American Hockey League.
“Andy had a strong training camp and he’s been our best
player in the AHL and we think he can help us in Phoenix
now,” Maloney said. “We need to have more skill and
playmaking ability in our lineup so Andy will get his
chance. We like his creativity, his puck movement and his
Miele is expected to join the Coyotes for practice on
Saturday and then make his NHL debut on Sunday when
Phoenix plays the Anaheim Ducks at Honda Center at 5 p.m.
“He’s coming up to play right away and he’ll be in the
lineup on Sunday,” Maloney said. “Hopefully he can help us
get back on track.”
Miele, who won the 2011 Hobey Baker Award after an
outstanding senior season at Miami University, has notched
three goals and four assists in four games for the
Coyotes’ AHL affiliate in Portland, Maine. On Wednesday,
he notched two goals and three assists vs. Manchester.
“He’s been controlling the games he’s played in down
there,” Maloney said. “Prior to his five-point game he was
hitting posts and creating plays, he just hadn’t had as
much luck finishing. He’s certainly shown a skill set that
we could use here.”
Miele had a decent training camp with the Coyotes and was
one of the last players sent to the AHL before the regular
season started. After what he saw of Miele in camp and his
solid play in the AHL, Maloney is confident the 5-foot-9
center can contribute right away.
“The thing I like about Andy is yes, he’s a first-year
pro, but he’s 23 years old,” Maloney said. “And he’s a
mature, confident kid. I don’t believe he’ll be up here in
awe of the situation or the players. He’s determined to
show people that he can play in the league and I’m excited
to see him play.”
Maloney added that Miele is not guaranteed a spot with the
team for the rest of the season. His performance, Maloney
said, will dictate how long he stays in the NHL.
At some point, look for Miele to play on a line with
winger Patrick O’Sullivan. The two played together in
preseason and gelled nicely.