Go to the Globe and Mail homepage

Jump to main navigationJump to main content

Phoenix goes shopping on deadline day Add to ...

The Phoenix Coyotes became buyers at Wednesday's trade deadline, hoping to continue their push for the playoffs by acquiring forward Wojtek Wolski and veteran defenceman Derek Morris.

Wolski arrives from the Colorado Avalanche for forwards Peter Mueller and Kevin Porter while Morris comes from the Boston Bruins for a conditional draft pick in 2011.

Morris spent parts of five seasons with the Coyotes and was traded to the New York Rangers at last year's deadline. On the cusp of their first playoff berth since 2002, the Coyotes are buyers this time around.

"We all know everything that went on there and how tough it was," Morris said on a conference call. "I think they've done an absolutely amazing job. I respect Dave Tippett as a coach, I think he's probably one of the most well-respected players from players on other teams or any team. ...

"I'm excited about that coaching staff - that's a big, big reason why that thing is turning around."

Phoenix was sitting fifth in the Western Conference with 79 points entering play Wednesday.

Morris knows how important it is the team ends its playoff drought, particularly after the ugly bankruptcy proceedings it went through last summer.

"The (fans) that follow hockey there are passionate about hockey, they love their team through thick and thin," he said. "Obviously, when things go bad anywhere, you don't get quite the fan support that you feel you deserve. The people that have been there and went through the hard times have always been there, they're passionate.

"I think it would be a nice reward for them to see that team in the playoffs and I think the support's going to grow from there."

The Coyotes also acquired veteran defenceman Mathieu Schneider from the Vancouver Canucks for prospect Sean Zimmerman and a conditional draft pick in 2010.

The 40-year-old Schneider has been sidelined with a knee injury of late.

Wolski is a former first-round pick of the Avalanche who is scheduled to become a restricted free agent on July 1. The 24-year-old is currently earning $3.1-million and has 17 goals and 47 points in 62 games.

The 31-year-old Morris is earning $3.3-million this year and will become an unrestricted free agent on July 1. He previously spent parts of five seasons in Phoenix and had three goals and 25 points in 58 games for the Bruins this year.

Mueller and Porter were both drafted by the Coyotes and spent their entire careers with the team.

The 21-year-old Mueller was selected eighth overall in 2006 but has struggled this season, scoring four goals and 17 points in 54 games. Porter has spent the majority of the season in the American Hockey League.

 

In the know

Most popular video »

Highlights

More from The Globe and Mail

Most Popular Stories