Arizona Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett focused on winning, not top draft prospects

Jan 30, 2015, 9:12 PM | Updated: 9:12 pm
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Arizona Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett is not used to losing.

With his team sitting at 17-25-6 more than halfway through the season, Tippett is in danger of having a losing season for the first time in his 12-year NHL coaching career.

While many fans have shifted their attention to the upcoming NHL Draft, which includes a pair of potentially franchise-changing centers, Tippett and his players remain focused on winning now.

“You’re always wanting to try to improve your team, improve your organization,” Tippett told Bickley and Marotta on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM Friday. “Coaches and players — they aren’t wired that way. You don’t think about losing, you think about winning.”

The Coyotes broke a seven-game losing streak Thursday night with a 3-1 win in Toronto. Despite the win, Arizona remains 15 points out of the playoff picture, six points closer to 30th place than a wild card spot.

“No matter what happens, we still have to prepare every day to win,” Tippett said. “You try to prepare your team to win.

“Now all that being said, I’m sure in the business part of it — the management part of it — they’re looking at all their options to try to improve our team.”

Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel are the two top prizes awaiting the teams with the first two picks in June’s draft. McDavid is the kingpin and almost-certain No. 1 overall pick. Tippett called him a “high, high-end prospect.”

Even with all that talent on the horizon, the current crop of Coyotes is focused on the remainder of the regular season.

“From a coaches and players standpoint, we don’t think about (losing),” Tippett said. “We think about how we can play well and how we can win games.”

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Arizona Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett focused on winning, not top draft prospects