The Phoenix Coyotes put their 4 game winning streak on the line tonight against the Los Angeles Kings. The Coyotes come off a stirring comeback win at home against the Red wing is which they were down a goal late in the third, tied it and then won in overtime. The Kings were almost on the opposite end of such a game against the Stars. Up 4-1 going into the third, only to have the Stars come back and tie it 4-4 to send it to OT. Luckily for the Kings they were able to win it in the extra frame, but it certainly did show many weaknesses in the Kings game. Namely that when they got up with a lead, the Kings fell asleep. Not that we'll be letting the game get to that point, but It's certainly something good to know.
In the two teams only other meeting so far this year the Coyotes trounced the Kings 6-3 in a game where Radim Vrbata scored a couple of goals and in which the Coyotes had a rare game in which the offense was really on fire. Hopefully the Coyotes can find that light switch again as frequently we've been getting just enough to win. Why leave any doubt though right?
Five for Winning
Find the Passing Lanes Again: Before the Red Wings game the Coyotes had been masters at disrupting the passing lanes and creating turnovers. But, this last game the Wings were able to pass pretty much wherever they wanted and because of that dominated the time of possession if not the scoring chances. That will need to change tonight.
Who's Sullivan Here For?: The Coyotes called up Defenseman Sean Sullivan from San Antonio yesterday. The question is why? Is someone injured? Or is it just in case with the Coyotes leaving on a 3 game eastern road trip. Hopefully that's the case and not, what some have mentioned, Zbynek Michalek being injured. If that's the case it would be a huge blow to the Coyotes who would lose their biggest shot blocker and most defensively responsible D-Man.
Crush Kopitar: Anze Kopitar had one heck of a game against Dallas on Thursday, scoring his first career hat-trick against them. Looks like we know who the Czech line featuring Martin Hanzal will be going up against.
Team GAA tracker: 1st in the league, at 1.50 goals per game. The next best team is Buffalo at 2.00 goals per game. That's an astounding difference from last year when we were one of the worst teams in the league at giving up goals.
Get to Quick Early: He coughed up the lead late in the Dallas game and his confidence has to be at least a bit shaken. He's been good enough to earn a 6-3 record, but has an average GAA at 3.01. even his coach had this to say:
"...The focus needs to be there," Kings Head Coach Terry Murray told the team's official Web Site regarding Quick. "There is a responsibility with being the No. 1 goaltender. He clearly has to understand that."
Let's really shake him by putting a few behind him before he get get back into his groove.
See you at the game and...