Total Team Makeover? Coyotes Active in Trade Market on Draft Day

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(Source: 3TV/KPHO) (Source: 3TV/KPHO)

Late Thursday night, after the Coyotes parted ways with Coach Dave Tippet, GM John Chyka told reporters trades that draft day was a possibility. The Coyotes GM got started making moves early Friday morning.

The Coyotes acquired defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson from the Chicago Blackhawks for defenseman Connor Murphy and forward Laurent Dauphin.  

"We are very pleased to acquire Niklas," said Chayka. "He's an elite player and one of the NHL's top defenseman. He's a warrior who played a key role in Chicago's last three Stanley Cup wins. We are thrilled to have him join our team

The 30-year-old Hjalmarsson won three Stanley Cups with the Chicago Blackhawks. He earned an Olympic Silver Medal with Coyotes defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson for Team Sweden in 2014.  

Hjalmarsson was a popular member of the Blackhawks during their Stanley Cup runs Chicago fans seemed sad to see him leave town. 

Chyka wasn't finished making deals, trading the 7th overall pick and defenseman Anthony DeAngelo to the New York Rangers. In exchange, the Coyotes acquired center Derek Stepan and goaltender Antti Raanta from the New York Rangers. The moves fill glaring holes on the Coyotes roster.

"We are thrilled to acquire Derek," said Chayka. "Our organization has been searching for a true number one center for over a decade and we are confident that he can be that for us."

The 27-year-old Stepan finished the season ranked third on the Rangers in points and second in assists. Raanta posted four shutouts in goal last season in New York.  The 28-year-old has 47 wins in 94 career games with the Rangers and Blackhawks.

"Antti is a highly skilled, athletic goaltender," said Chayka. "We're confident that he can emerge as an excellent starting goalie for us."

After trading the 7th overall pick to New York, the Coyotes have one pick remaining in the first round.  They will draft 23rd in a pick acquired from the Minnesota Wild.

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