It didn’t take long this summer for the Phoenix Coyotes to take advantage of their finally stable ownership situation. The club went out and grabbed perhaps the top free agent in a thin class, signing center Mike Ribeiro to a four-year deal. The signing was expected to immediately transform a stagnant Coyotes offensive attack.
For the most part, we’ve seen just that here early on for the Coyotes. Ribeiro has been mighty impressive in the limited sample size in which we’ve seen him out in the desert. The Coyotes are off to a solid start, and Ribeiro has really come on as an offensive threat recently.
Ribeiro has appeared in nine games so far for the Coyotes this season, posting seven points. More impressive is that his last six games have featured at least a point, making whatever adjustment period he had to go through a quick one.
Those six games have seen Ribeiro record all of his seven points, three of them coming from the puck finding the twine and the other four being helpers. He’s a plus-1 for the season, but is a plus-4 over his last three games. He’s actually winning his draws at a 54 percent clip as well, which is much higher than his career averages would indicate.
Ribeiro isn’t the type of player who necessarily needs to find the back of the net in order for the Coyotes to be successful. His playmaking ability and creativity with the puck allows those around him to succeed, in addition to the fact that he’s a power play wizard.
It’s safe to say that at this point in the season, the Ribeiro signing is working out for the Coyotes. If it helps their offense progress to the point where they’re a major threat in the postseason, then the critics that were around at the initial inking of the deal will disappear almost completely.