Patterson, Tocchet to lead Coyotes
Rick Tocchet played three of his 18 NHL seasons with the Arizona Coyotes. Steve Patterson worked three years at Arizona State University, the final two as athletic director.
The Coyotes’ two new leaders are back in the Valley of the Sun – Tocchet as coach, Patterson as president and CEO – tasked with finding consistency on the ice, a permanent home and reigniting a fan base.
“I think we have the right people in place, from putting a winning team on the ice to finding a stadium that’s going to make everyone proud,” Coyotes owner Andrew Barroway said Thursday.
The Coyotes’ ongoing desert saga has included bankruptcy, four seasons of being run by the NHL, a new ownership group, a dispute with the city of Glendale that led to the dissolution of a long-term lease agreement and numerous roster re-imaginations. There also hasn’t been a lot of winning – aside from a run to the 2012 Western Conference Finals – which has led to waning fan support from a base that often only awakens for a winning team.
The current organizational shift started in recent seasons, as the Coyotes skewed toward young, talented players and hired John Chayka, a 28-yearold analytics whiz who became the youngest GM in NHL history last year.