It seems feasible that Martinook is taking a leap as a player this season. It’s too early to be sure, but the evidence he’s put forth thus far has been encouraging.
The View From the 200 Level
Rookie Dylan Strome made his debut and gets a passing grade for his first turn on NHL ice. He had an assist on Tobias Rieder‘s goal and did better defensive work than expected.
It will be interesting to see Tipp’s plans for Strome and Christian Dvorak going forward.
Going off of the one game sample size, there’s not a whole lot of difference between the two bar face off prowess. Both were sub 50% in their outings, but Dvorak finished his game at 43% while Strome won just 25% of his draws.
On the other hand, Strome appeared more comfortable and capable of generating opportunities in the offensive end.
Moving from those rookies to the one on the defensive side, Jakob Chychrun needs to be in the lineup.
Kevin Connauton is either unready to return or is, at best, as unreliable as the coaching staff is worried about Chychrun being on the back end.
The difference? He doesn’t have the high end skill and potential that Chych possesses. After tonight that swap seems like a no-brainer.
While they’re at it, they might see how quickly they can get Michael Stone going so that McBain isn’t a permanent fixture in the lineup.
If Mike Smith is out for extended time, the Arizona Coyotes are going to have settle on a backup for Louis Domingue.
Domingue showed he is able to carry the load to some degree in 2015-16, but he eventually wore down due to Tippett lacking a viable option behind him.
To avoid that he must have a competent backup.
Justin Peters is, unfortunately, not likely to be that person so that leaves the Yotes in a bit of a quandary if that bears out.