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Will Phoenix healthy scratch Ribeiro again?

Mar 27, 2014, 11:57 AM EDT

Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett made a bold — and successful — lineup decision on Tuesday in Pittsburgh, making Mike Ribeiro a healthy scratch for what proved to be a crucial 3-2 win.

Now, Tippett might do it again tonight against New Jersey:

This is a noteworthy development, given 1) Ribeiro leads all Coyotes forwards in assists this season, with 30, and is arguably their top setup man; 2) He’s in the first of a lucrative four-year, $22 million deal; 3) Part of the reason Ribeiro signed in Phoenix was to reunite with Tippett, as the pair had great success and chemistry together in Dallas.

“I think that was my No. 1 goal,” Ribeiro said at the time. “To go somewhere knowing the coach and knowing a little bit of what they were looking for and what my role was going to be and being comfortable, and being able to communicate with the coach.

“[Tippet's] done a great job there in Phoenix. He knows what he can get from me and I know what he wants and I’m ready to work for that.”

All that said, Ribeiro has been slumping lately, scoring just two points in nine games prior to the Pittsburgh benching.

He was especially poor in recent losses to Boston and New York, going a combined minus-4 while being on the ice for two goals — including Ryan McDonagh‘s OT winner — against the Rangers on Monday.

  1. ibieiniid - Mar 27, 2014 at 12:15 PM

    chalk up a rare win for GMGM?

    • thailer35 - Mar 27, 2014 at 12:36 PM

      Not sure if trying be sarcastic/ironic…

      • kingcobraman - Mar 27, 2014 at 12:39 PM

        I think its more like moronic…..hahahaha.

      • ibieiniid - Mar 27, 2014 at 12:42 PM

        just trying to start some “Hockey Talk.” Coyotes posts are usually somewhat quiet, so I figured I could get some Caps fans in here lol. but there’s something to be said about signing Grabovski to fill Ribs spot for half the money, yet getting more point per game production from Grabo, disregarding that he got hurt.

      • ibieiniid - Mar 27, 2014 at 12:43 PM

        and kingcobra, you can just f*** off.

  2. kingcobraman - Mar 27, 2014 at 12:37 PM

    great decision by Tippet…. you must produce or your out… not showing favoritism …they haven’t sealed a playoff spot yet…

  3. thailer35 - Mar 27, 2014 at 12:39 PM

    I hope Ribs sits though. He has been the exact opposite of the prototypical player in Tippetts system. Absolutely refuses to battle for the puck. Pretty big contract for someone to stand around and wait for the pass and then turn it over trying to force passes instead of shooting when the opportunity is there.

    • thailer35 - Mar 27, 2014 at 12:41 PM

      Forgot to mention rack up a minimum of 6 PIMS/game on stupid penatlies.

    • darksidecowboy - Mar 27, 2014 at 1:08 PM

      Being a Stars fan, I remember Tipp would do this to Ribs every once in a while to reassert his style of game. Ribeiro would come out guns a blazing after that. It’s Tippett’ way and both PHX and Dallas are in playoff races. I’d expect Ribeiro would be back the following game and probably get a hat trick.

  4. stcrowe - Mar 27, 2014 at 1:08 PM

    Ribeiro has good skills, but he has always lacked discipline and intensity. I was a fan of his early on. Now, I am disappointed by how much more he could have been.

  5. 950003cups - Mar 27, 2014 at 2:18 PM

    I hope he knows how to get to Newark. He’ll be a NJ Devil next year. That’s where old men go to sip from the fountain of youth.

    Elias, Jagr, Zidlicky, Brodeur, and to an extent Zubrus. All are our best players.

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