Arizona Coyotes

Should The Arizona Coyotes Trade Radim Vrbata?

Published On March 1, 2017 | By Jason Harrison | Editorials

Radim Vrbata has been the most reliable offensive weapon of the Arizona Coyotes this season, which puts him in line for a healthy return at the deadline if traded. Should the Yotes make that move or stand pat?

Radim Vrbata has been Mr. Consistency for the Arizona Coyotes.

He’s also likely worth a decent return on the trade market.

Should John Chayka trade him and cash in all his chips, or should he keep the one reliable offensive weapon that he has outside of Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Max Domi on the roster?

In a perfect world he would be able to do both.

Chayka could send Vrbata to a contender for assets and then, presumably, the Czech winger would return to the desert as a free agent in the summer with some playoff fun under his belt. The reality is it’s hard to tell if that is a viable course of action.

There are suitors for Radim Vrbata. Several of them, in fact, and they have assets that the rebuilding Arizona Coyotes could dearly use.

Unfortunately, there’s also the factor of Vrbata’s personal preference.

He not only wants to be in Arizona, he actually performs better in the desert. Whether it’s comfort or fit or he just really loves saguaro cacti, things just click for Vrby when he’s got a Coyotes crest on his sweater. Other teams know this, as well, which could impact the assets Chayka is able to recoup. It also seems a little cruel to bring Radim back to the place he’s most comfortable and immediately ship him right back out a few months later…

…and then expect him to come back in the offseason.

Vrby has been an amazing Coyote in his career, but that is asking a lot of the man.

Still, that’s exactly what the team needs to do.

Having Vrbata on the roster might make the team slightly more watchable, yes, and he’d likely contribute another win or two down the stretch, but the asset(s) they could get in return for his services will likely prove to be far more useful in the future when those standing points really matter.

Will the Coyotes get a player or pick that produces at the caliber Radim Vrbata has for the Coyotes? That seems unlikely, but it’s worth the gamble.

That pick or prospect Chayka acquires could be packaged for a higher caliber player in the future, however, or result in an excellent cost controlled depth player like Tobias Rieder or Jordan Martinook.

We know that once the Coyotes are consistently good that Vrbata will likely no longer be.

With that knowledge John Chayka should act accordingly.

Even if it hurts.