The Phoenix Coyotes have added more than one impact player for their offensive future this summer, both through free agency and in the draft. We all know that the prize they acquired via the free agent market was Mike Ribeiro, but as exciting as that addition is, Max Domi represents an almost as equally as exciting commodity.
Domi was the Coyotes’ first pick in this summer’s entry draft. Though he’s undersized as a forward, questions immediately abounded as to whether or not he’d make the team right out of camp, given their need for offense. He stuck around for a while, but was eventually sent back to his junior club, the London Knights.
It shouldn’t come as that much of a surprise that Domi was sent back to junior. The question is whether or not the Coyotes did make the right move in sending the 18-year-old back. The answer is a resounding yes, as long of a look as he was able to get from the coaching staff and front office.
The thing about Domi is that he’s a center. The Coyotes aren’t exactly in need of someone in the middle at this point, as they’re set with their first three lines. They didn’t want to throw him out on the left wing on that second unit, which is currently an issue for the Coyotes.
What you especially don’t want a prospect, and a high end talent like Domi, doing is logging minutes on the fourth line. His opportunities will be limited, both in terms of production and in terms of ice time. At the end of the day, it simply didn’t make sense to keep him around at this point in time.
However, next year, when the Coyotes could have openings in their top six or top nine, expect to see Domi playing in the desert. He’s too skilled a presence to keep down there for too long. Perhaps we’ll even see him at the tail end of this year, when the junior season has already come to an end.