GLENDALE, AZ - MAY 15: Michal Rozsival #32 of the Phoenix Coyotes hangs his head as teammate Oliver Ekman-Larsson #23 of the Phoenix Coyotes looks on dejectedly after Game Two of the Western Conference Final during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Jobing.com Arena on May 15, 2012 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Kings defeated the Coyotes 4-0. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Tomorrow night the Phoenix Coyotes will be playing on the road against the Los Angeles Kings. So far the Yotes have not been able to get anything going against the Kings, and though the series is not yet over if they do not do something to correct the course then the series will slip out of their hands. Luckily the Coyotes have been very good on the road lately, and they are going to be playing with a desperation that they have not yet had, which could work to their advantage. The Coyotes will be playing without their top center Martin Hanzal who was suspended for one game for a boarding penalty against the Kings' captain, Dustin Brown, which is a significant loss in both skill and physical presence. This could possibly be another advantage for the Yotes though, we all know that when faced with a significant loss in their roster they will occasionally rally and win the game. Adrian Aucoin may be returning this game, he has been out since Game 5 of the Nashville series but he has been skating and practicing with the team and may bring something to the game.
Five For Winning
Stay get disciplined. The Kings are in the Coyotes heads for various reasons including their lead in the series. The Yotes need to stay disciplined and not do anything else stupid.
2. Win the faceoffs. This was a point of pride for the first two series but not something that the Yotes were able to carry into the Conference Finals. They need to not only win the faceoffs this game but control the puck for an extended period after that.
3. Clear the zone. The Kings forecheck is one of their points of pride, a well deserved point of pride, but the Coyotes need to do something to limit that forecheck and one of the best ways to do that is keep them from having extended time in the Yote's zone.
4. Score first. This one doesn't really need explanation.
5. Play off the Kings' crowds energy. The Desert Dogs were able to do this in Chicago and Nashville, they feed all the negativity of their opponents crowd and they use it to do better. Since this is the first game we are going to learn if they can do this again.
Players To Watch
|2011 - Mikkel Boedker||11||13||24||-2||12|
Mikkel Boedker has been a playoff hero before, lets see if he can be one again.
|2011 - Dustin Brown||22||32||54||18||53|
Brown leads his team the way Doan leads the Coyotes, by example. The Yotes need to find a way to shut him down cleanly.
|2011 - Mike Smith||67||3903||38||18||144||2.21||2066||1922||.930||8|
Mike Smith hasn't played badly against LA, he just isn't getting the help he needs in front of him. This would be a good time for him to be a wall though.
|2011 - Jonathan Quick||69||4099||35||21||133||1.95||1863||1730||.929||10|
Jonathan Quick is a great player although the Yotes have found weaknesses in his game before they just need to keep hammering away at him and hope a few get in.
Phoenix Coyotes Injuries
|Player||Injury Type||Injury Date|
Los Angeles Kings Injuries