Coyotes Ups and Downs: April 6 Edition

Newest Coyote Andy Miele during practice with Coach Tippett (photo courtesy @Yotesgurl)

Hard to do a lot of detailed judging of the Phoenix Coyotes on the basis of just one game over the past week, but as the Coyotes prepare for their final three games, players seem to be on the mend although they remain without a clinched playoff berth, let alone home ice advantage or a favorable match-up.

As we do every Wednesday, join us after the jump for a look at who's trending up, trending down and sitting in neutral.

And here we go:

Goalies Trend Notes
Ilya Bryzgalov http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Bryz didn't have his finest outing against Colorado, although for the most part the team was asleep in front of him. He was however victimized on the only shot he faced in the third period and then again in the shootout. One of the things that haunted us last playoffs was that Bryz was unable to steal a game for us against Detroit; hopefully, he will be dominant this year.
Jason LaBarbera http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Nothing to report - Barbs is just keeping the players' moods light and doing his job to the best of his ability.
Defensemen
Adrian Aucoin http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Still not on the scoresheet, but Oakie is doing his job defensively despite being a -1 against Colorado. He was second on the team in shorthanded ice time which allowed the Coyotes to kill all 4 penalties they took.
Oliver Ekman-Larsson http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png OEL was sent to San Antonio, and despite a rough first game back (from what I read), it's good that he's getting playing time again. His raw talents will always be strong and the key for him is just developing his game awareness for the North American style. It will come in time.
Ed Jovanovski http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/538577/ow.png It looks like Jovo should be back on the ice tonight against Los Angeles and the three games may be just enough time for him to get back to speed.
Rostislav Klesla http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Still no points since his first game, but Klesla certainly isn't here to provide that - his defensive game was stronger against Colorado than it was the previous week.
Derek Morris http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png DMo was a +1 against Colorado and played his now typical strong defensive physical game. He's still the guy most likely to break his stick on a one timer for the team, but maybe he can cash in a few this postseason.
Michal Rozsival http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Rozsival was a -1 against Colorado although I can't say I really noticed him out there much, which is probably a good thing for a defensive defenseman.
Kurt Sauer http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/538577/ow.png Sarah McClellan had a fabulous article about Sauer this past week - really heart-wrenching stuff. I highly recommend that you go read it here.
David Schlemko http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Schlemko may be the odd man out against Los Angeles with Jovo's return to the line-up; Schlem has played well, but he's probably the most prone to a defensive mistake and we know how Tippett feels about those types of players.
Keith Yandle http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Yandle had an assist, a few shots on goal, a few blocked shots, 26+ minutes of ice time. Basically, he was everything we expect him to be for the Coyotes...but it's hard to say that that is anything other than business as usual, not hot or cold.
Forwards
Eric Belanger http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Belanger had an assist against Colorado and 6 shots on goal, despite being a -1. Playing with Doan has brought out the best in Belanger it seems and they'll need him to play that well going into the post-season as the #1 center for this squad.
Paul Bissonnette http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Only 2:46 of ice time against Colorado. I'm tempted to give him a plus though for his phenomenal twitter chirping of new guy @Andy_Miele after Miele's first practice on Monday.
Mikkel Boedker http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Boedker may not have had a point against Colorado, but it wasn't for lack of effort. He's been a sparkplug since returning to the Phoenix squad and with the increased ice time he's receiving he is making it count.
Shane Doan http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Doan had a goal and an assist against the Avs and continues to play unbelievable in all three zones. I think Doan has earned a spot on the PK going forward with his intense play. Against Colorado, Doan played over 25 minutes - that is insane for a forward.
Andrew Ebbett http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Ebbett's been playing a bit better lately, although he barely took any faceoffs the other night which had been his strength recently. With Fiddler back and Korpikoski coming back and Pyatt, I wouldn't be surprised to see Ebbett return to the press box for a few games.
Vernon Fiddler http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Fiddy comes back, logs over 17 minutes of ice time, gets 3 shots on goal, wins over 64% of his faceoffs. Everything we expect from Fiddy.
Martin Hanzal http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/538577/ow.png According to @Yotesgurl, Marty is actually alive and skating at practice. Not sure we can ask for much more. Hopefully he is back on the ice against San Jose this weekend so he is completely ready to go in the playoffs.
Ryan Hollweg
http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Nothing flashy from Hollweg, and not getting a ton of ice time with just over 6 minutes against Colorado, but he delivered 3 big hits during that time and seemed to get the team going a bit after they trailed 2-0.
Lauri Korpikoski http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/538577/ow.png Korpy is skating with the team again and he should be back tonight against Los Angeles which is a good thing for the Coyotes considering how important he is to the team in all facets of the game.
Brett MacLean http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Brett's had only 6 minutes in the game against Colorado, but they were largely unmemorable (mostly because I can't remember him doing anything special whatsoever).
Andy Miele
http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png The Hobey Baker finalist signs with the Coyotes, flies to Phoenix, participates in his first practice, gains a few thousand twitter followers and engages in some epic chirping with BizNasty...I love this kid already.
Taylor Pyatt http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/538577/ow.png Pyatt missed the game against Colorado, but should be back tonight against Los Angeles - the M*A*S*H unit continues to grow, although it looks like almost everyone is on the right side of the healing process.
Lee Stempniak http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png With the team down 2-0, it was Lee's individual effort that allowed the Coyotes to work their way back into the game. Lee's effort on his play exemplified his game this season and hopefully he will continue to play as well as he has recently and keep getting on the score sheet going through the postseason.
Kyle Turris http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Kyle got some increased ice time against Colorado and had 4 shots on goal, including a few pretty good scoring opportunities. I also noticed KT going into the corners and actually winning pucks - if he keeps up that type of play, he's going to keep seeing more ice time and his productivity should increase.
Radim Vrbata http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Vrby tried to take some more shots, but couldn't seem to hit the net at all against Colorado. He will benefit significantly from the return of Hanzal and his normal linemates and role on the team shutting down the other team's top line while sniping on the power play.
Ray Whitney http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Whitney also had a goal and assist against the Avs while playing over 23 minutes. Whitney is the biggest addition to the Coyotes roster since last year's team and hopefully he's the difference between another heart-breaking loss in the playoffs (assuming that they clinch tonight, or just in general).
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