2 Surprising Cuts Coyotes Made In Training Camp

The Arizona Coyotes are expected to be at the bottom of the NHL standings this season, so their lineup will be filled with veterans on bad contracts and younger players trying to break into the NHL. The team is aware they won't win very many games, but it is surprising that these two prospects didn't make the team.

Nathan Smith

Nathan Smith got into 10 games with the Coyotes late last season after finishing his third year at Minnesota State U - Mankato. He scored two goals and four points in those 10 games and looked good. That strong initial showing for the Coyotes should have allowed for a good shot to make the team out of training camp this season.

NHL.com noted him as one of the players on the cusp of the NHL. He is a centerman but like many rookies who play center, he would have likely been used on the wing early in his career. The Coyotes have players like Liam O'Brien, Laurent Dauphin, and Nick Bjugstad who stayed in camp over Smith. This may be so he can earn a lot more playing time in the AHL and adjust to pro hockey before sticking in the NHL, but he still had a shot at making the Coyotes.

Ivan Prosvetov

It appeared as though Ivan Prosvetov was on pace to earn a spot as the backup goaltender this season with the Coyotes, but was sent down before three others. It isn't a surprise that Karel Vejmelka stayed with the team and will be the starter, but Jonas Johansson and Jon Gillies hung around at training camp for longer. Gillies was just waived, but it looks like the tandem to start the season will be Vejmelka and Johansson.

It is surprising that Johansson is still an option for an NHL team considering his horrible career stats in the NHL with multiple teams. Last season he posted a 4.69 goals against average and .856 save percentage in 11 appearances while Prosvetov finished with a 4.22 GAA and .875 SV% in just three appearances, but is home-grown and four years younger.

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