ARIZONA COYOTES

Arizona Coyotes name Bill Armstrong as new general manager

Sep 17, 2020, 9:15 AM | Updated: 9:25 am

Arizona Coyotes players and coaches pause on the ice during NHL hockey practice at Gila River Arena...

Arizona Coyotes players and coaches pause on the ice during NHL hockey practice at Gila River Arena, Monday, July 13, 2020, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

The Arizona Coyotes named Bill Armstrong, the former St. Louis Blues assistant general manager and director of amateur scouting, as their new general manager on Thursday.

He joins the Coyotes on a four-year deal, with a team option for the fifth year, according to Arizona Sports’ John Gambadoro.

“Bill is smart, honest and hard-working, and he knows how to build a winning team,” said Coyotes owner Alex Meruelo in a team release. “He brings the right mix of hockey knowledge, business acumen and leadership qualities that we need in order to achieve our goal of bringing a Stanley Cup to Arizona.”

Gambadoro reported Tuesday that Armstrong was the leading candidate for the job.

The Coyotes cut ties with former general manager John Chayka in late July, with Steve Sullivan taking over the job in an interim role. Chayka had previously taken over the job in May of 2016, replacing Don Maloney, who had held the job for the previous nine seasons.

In late August, the NHL announced the Coyotes had been penalized for scouting violations and would lose their second-round draft pick this year and their first-round pick next year.

Armstrong had been with the Blues since 2004, making his way up the front office ranks in St. Louis and earning the assistant GM title in 2018.

“I am extremely grateful to Mr. Meruelo, Alex Meruelo Jr., and (president and CEO) Xavier Gutierrez for this opportunity,” Armstrong said in a statement. “We have great ownership that is committed to winning, a very good core group of young, talented players, and a passionate fan base. I’m excited about our future and the opportunity to build this team into a perennial playoff contender.”

The Coyotes made the 2020 NHL Playoffs after qualifying via a series win over the Nashville Predators and were eliminated by the Colorado Avalanche.

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