The Arizona Coyotes made a trade Wednesday, and it comes as a bit of a surprise as the team has sent goalie Devan Dubnyk to the Minnesota Wild for a third-round draft pick in the 2015 NHL Draft.
Dubnyk, 28, signed a one-year contract with the Coyotes in July and ended up being the team’s most consistent stopper. In 19 games this season, he has posted a 9-5-2 record with a 2.72 goals against average and a save percentage of .916.
“(We weren’t) actively looking to trade Devan, but if a deal came along that gave us what I would consider a good asset…a third round pick is a good asset,” said Coyotes GM Don Maloney. He also said the trade would allow the organization to get a better look at some of the younger goalies in their system and ultimately give the reins to starting goaltender Mike Smith.
Brought in to be the backup to Smith, Dubnyk had actually outplayed the higher-priced veteran, which led to many wondering if he would at some point assume the starting role.
“Devan played well for us, but at the end of the day Mike Smith is a No. 1 goalie,” said Maloney. “He has not had a particularly strong season to date, but it’s only halfway through. We need to get him back. He’s the guy that we’re going to have to lean on to get us where we want to be.”