The Phoenix Coyotes made an early move to help add depth to their roster for next season, as they signed forward Rob Klinkhammer to a two-year deal on Thursday. The 2013 season was Klinkhammer’s first with the Coyotes, and he seemed to finally find his offensive rhythm at the highest level, netting five goals and adding six assists. That output was five more goals and four more assists than he had managed in 16 prior games with the Ottawa Senators and Chicago Blackhawks.
The Coyotes finished the season 21st in goals per game, so bringing back a depth player like Klinkhammer is a great move. He has great size for a forward, and might have finally seized his chance to get out of the AHL. Klinkhammer had proven to be a consistent scorer in the minors over the past five season, and scored 14 goals while collecting 44 points in 53 games with the Portland Pirates this season. He has now shown that he can deliver in the NHL as well, and he should be a great addition for the Coyotes for the next two seasons.
Now that Klinkhammer is signed, the Coyotes can work on deals for their remaining free-agent forwards, a group of six that includes Mikkel Boedker, Lauri Korpikoski and Kyle Chipchura. Top scorers Shane Doan, Antoine Vermette, Radim Vrbata and Martin Hanzal all have at least one more year left on their contracts, so the scoring problems the Coyotes experienced this season may not last for very long.