MONTREAL — Arizona Coyotes general manager Bill Armstrong smiled when he was called an “NHL draft nerd” after the first round ended Thursday night.
“It was extremely fun,” he said. “We were in town early. Maybe a couple days too early. But we were excited about the draft. Had some fun with it. Put on our blue suits.”
The Coyotes’ front office had the most amusing fit for any team at the 2022 NHL draft in Montreal. When Armstrong, team president Xavier Gutierrez and Arizona’s front office took the stage to announce center Logan Cooley with the No. 3 overall pick, they were all wearing matching bright blue suits with red ties.
“I don’t like when everybody wears different colors. So if anyone has complaints it’s [on] me,” Armstrong said. “We’re a team. We should look like one.”
Synchronized fashion has become the rage for players as they arrive for NHL outdoor games. This was perhaps the first time an NHL front office has attempted the matching fashion gimmick at the draft.
Hockey social media lit up with comments about the look. That was before fans even got a glimpse at the inside of the suits.
Game faces on. pic.twitter.com/NT9U2o3yVI
— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) July 7, 2022
The outside of the @ArizonaCoyotes synchronized suits was awesome.
The inside was EPIC. #nhldraft2022 pic.twitter.com/qUONAARpBN
— Greg Wyshynski (@wyshynski) July 8, 2022
“There’s some good comic relief on the internet,” Armstrong said. “But I do believe that we were the best dressed at the draft, in my opinion,”
Who were they wearing?
“State and Liberty,” Armstrong said. “They gave us a good deal on them. I’ll be honest with you, and I’m not just saying this because I think that they’ll sponsor us, but they’re the most comfortable suits that I’ve ever worn in my life.”
Even as the fans had a chuckle, Armstrong believes that the Coyotes are going to be trendsetters.
“Remember in Carolina when they did the postgame celebrations? Everybody made fun of them. Now it’s culture. It’s fun,” he said.
“The NHL’s going to buy into it. Even the lining.”