List of Arizona Coyotes General Managers (1971-2024)

Arizona Coyotes General Managers
Arizona Coyotes General Managers

The Arizona Coyotes, since their establishment in 1971, have undergone a series of transformations both on and off the ice. Central to the team’s success and evolution has been the role of the general manager. Over the years, these individuals have played a pivotal role in shaping the franchise’s destiny, making critical decisions, and steering the team through various challenges. In this article, we take a comprehensive look at the list of Arizona Coyotes General Managers from 1971 to 2024, highlighting their tenures and notable accomplishments.

Also Read: List of Anaheim Ducks General Managers (1993-2024)

List of Arizona Coyotes General Managers (1971-2024)

1Annis StukusDec 2, 1971 – Jul 1974No playoff appearances
2Rudy Pilous†Jul 1974 – Nov 22, 1978Won Avco World Trophy 2 times (1975–76, 1977–78)
3John Ferguson, Sr.Nov 22, 1978 – Oct 30, 1988Won Avco World Trophy (1978–79), 7 playoff appearances
4Mike SmithOct 30, 1988 – Jan 19, 19943 playoff appearances
5John PaddockJan 19, 1994 – Dec 11, 19961 playoff appearance
6Bobby SmithDec 11, 1996 – Feb 17, 20014 playoff appearances
7Cliff Fletcher†Feb 17, 2001 – Aug 28, 2001No playoff appearances
8Mike BarnettAug 28, 2001 – Apr 11, 2007No playoff appearances
9Don MaloneyMay 29, 2007 – Apr 11, 2016Won General Manager of the Year Award (2009–10), 1 division title, 3 playoff appearances
10John ChaykaMay 5, 2016 – Jul 26, 2020No playoff appearances
11Steve SullivanJul 26, 2020 – Sep 16, 20201 playoff appearance
12Bill ArmstrongSep 16, 2020 – presentNo playoff appearances

Annis Stukus (December 2, 1971 – July 1974):

Annis Stukus was the first general manager in the history of the Arizona Coyotes franchise. Serving from the team’s inception until July 1974, his tenure laid the foundation for the organization’s early years.

Rudy Pilous† (July 1974 – November 22, 1978):

Rudy Pilous took the helm from Stukus and achieved notable success, winning the Avco World Trophy twice during the 1975–76 and 1977–78 seasons, showcasing a strong start for the Coyotes.

John Ferguson, Sr. (November 22, 1978 – October 30, 1988):

John Ferguson, Sr. guided the team to victory, securing the Avco World Trophy in the 1978–79 season. Under his leadership, the Coyotes made seven playoff appearances, solidifying their presence in the league.

Mike Smith (October 30, 1988 – January 19, 1994):

During Mike Smith’s tenure, the Coyotes made three playoff appearances, showcasing a competitive edge. Smith played a crucial role in shaping the team’s identity in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

John Paddock (January 19, 1994 – December 11, 1996):

John Paddock’s leadership saw the Coyotes make one playoff appearance during his tenure. His strategic decisions and management style contributed to the team’s performance during this period.

Bobby Smith (December 11, 1996 – February 17, 2001):

Bobby Smith oversaw a successful era with the Coyotes, leading the team to four playoff appearances. His tenure marked a period of competitiveness and achievement for the franchise.

Cliff Fletcher† (February 17, 2001 – August 28, 2001):

Cliff Fletcher’s brief stint as general manager did not see playoff appearances, but his experience and contributions to the team’s overall strategy are noteworthy in the context of the franchise’s history.

Mike Barnett (August 28, 2001 – April 11, 2007):

Under Mike Barnett’s leadership, the Coyotes faced challenges, and the team did not make playoff appearances. His tenure contributed to the franchise’s growth and development.

Don Maloney (May 29, 2007 – April 11, 2016):

Don Maloney’s era was marked by notable achievements, including winning the General Manager of the Year Award in the 2009–10 season. The team secured one division title and made three playoff appearances during his tenure.

John Chayka (May 5, 2016 – July 26, 2020):

John Chayka’s term did not see playoff appearances, but his strategic decisions and focus on analytics had a significant impact on the team’s approach to player management and development.

Steve Sullivan (July 26, 2020 – September 16, 2020):

Steve Sullivan’s brief stint as general manager saw the team make one playoff appearance, showcasing his ability to make an immediate impact.

Bill Armstrong (September 16, 2020 – present):

Bill Armstrong is the current general manager, taking charge in 2020. As of the latest available information, the team has not made playoff appearances under his leadership, but his efforts in shaping the roster and future direction are ongoing.


The Arizona Coyotes have seen a diverse array of leaders in the role of general manager, each contributing to the team’s narrative in unique ways. From championship victories to playoff appearances, and even periods of rebuilding, these individuals have left an indelible mark on the franchise. As the Coyotes continue to navigate the ever-evolving landscape of professional hockey, the legacy of these general managers remains an integral part of the team’s rich history.

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