Arizona Coyotes’ Armstrong hopes for ‘superstar’ with No. 6 pick in NHL Entry Draft
Jun 27, 2023, 10:02 PM | Updated: Jun 28, 2023, 11:34 am
(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The Arizona Coyotes have done their homework on the 2023 NHL Entry Draft Wednesday.
The only task that remains for general manager Bill Armstrong and his staff is to take the plunge, make their picks and hope for the best.
But with the No. 6 pick in the draft, Armstrong is looking for not just a guy who can make an impact, but perhaps to land a player who will have a lasting impact.
“You could hit a superstar there, that’s what we are aiming for,” Armstrong said.
In addition to having the No. 6 overall selection, the Coyotes also hold 11 additional picks, including Ottawa’s first-round selection, which is slotted at No. 12 overall.
Armstrong told Arizona Sports’ Burns & Gambo the team is looking to add the best player available and is not focusing just on a defenseman or a forward.
“Either way we go come draft day, we are going to add some talent to the organization,” he said.
“If we can let these players slowly come into our lineup over the next few years, we will be looking to compete for a championship.”
He said the organization is focused not just on talent, but in furthering the cultural transformation that has been in the works for several seasons and finding players that embody the “Coyote way.”
“That’s what we want. Players who are never going to roll over. They are not going to die, they are going to fight to win a championship,” he said.
Armstrong added finding such players does not just mean being active in the draft but is also reflected in the work the team has done in adding younger pros such as Connor Ingram, Juuso Valimaki and most recently defenseman Sean Durzi.
“(Durzi) can play in all the moments and he kills penalties too,“ Armstrong said. “Our forward group is excited because of his power-play ability.”
Up next though, is the draft and while he doesn’t anticipate any trades or major surprises in the organization’s moves, he said it could still happen.
“We have written on the board, ‘expect the unexpected,’ so you never know,” Armstrong said.