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San Jose Sharks at Phoenix Coyotes - Game #42 Preview

Today is apparently the 3 year anniversary of a game Sharks fans refer to as "Coyote Ugly" a game in which the Coyotes, who then had Jeremy Roenick (the 2nd time), Ladislav Nagy and Mike Comrie for as well as Curtis Joseph. So why is this called Coyote Ugly though? Because we downed the Sharks 8-0 in that game, got CuJo one of his many records and generally made the sharks look silly. In other words it was friggin awesome! It that repeatable tonight? Probably not, but I'm not going to say that it couldn't happen, especially with the Coyotes going for their eleventh straight home win.

The Sharks are coming off a win last night against the Capitals in which Evgeni Nabokov made 26 saves against the Capitals and the Sharks became the first team in 27 years to score two penalty shots in one game. Word is that we could see backup Thomas Greiss with the 2nd game of the back to back, but nothing is for sure especially with how close these two teams are in the standings. THe Coyotes will certainly be going back to Ilya Bryzgalov though Jason LaBarbera filled in nicely on Tuesday.

Five for Winning

Overcome the Injuries
The injury report is starting to actually fill up a little bit which is concerning. Daniel Winnik, Vernon FIddler, Kurt Sauer and now Jim Vandermeer are all projected to be out for tonight's game. While they aren't the big names of the team, they've all been key penalty killers for us. Luckily Radim Vrbata came back after taking a hit to the head in the last game, but we need these guys back soon

Sticks on the Ice!
One thing I noticed against the Canucks is that we have several players that can't seem to keep the sticks down even when they're in our own zone in order to receive the pass. Entirely too many passes end up out of reach or going under sticks simply because players aren't ready to receive them. Robert Lang was especially guilty of this as he had good opportunities ruined by flubbing the receptions. We've got little enough offense as is without taking away our own chances.

Clear the Puck
We got a little lucky on Tuesday on several shifts that were out on the ice entirely too long simply because we couldn't clear the zone. It would start with guys getting a little tired and making a weak clear attempt and then they'd get even weaker as the line got more and more tired. A few guys started panicking a little bit and instead of taking time they had to clear, just throwing the puck and ending up with a Canuck player keeping it in. We need to keep cool and make sure that we clear effectively.

Offensive PKing
Our PK has been getting some nice offensive opportunities as of late, but we haven't been able to bury a shorthander quite yet. Lauri Korpikoski has gotten on the break a couple of times but just hasn't been able to finish or Marty Hanzal has gotten it on the break after being out there for a minute long Kill shift and didn't have the gas left. I'm waiting for us to convert big on one of those chances soon.

Don't be Satisfied
While I don't think a Dave Tippett coached team would do this, I worry about the Team becoming complacent (see last year) with what they've done. "Hey 10-2-2 is a good month" or being satisfied with our 10 game home winning streak etc. Coach Tippett has stated time and time again that they just take it a game at a time so that needs to continue. Not saying it is happening or it will, just that it scares the hell out of me.

Key Players

Lauri Korpikoski

#29 / Left Wing / Phoenix Coyotes



Jul 28, 1986

He scored the game winning shootout goal against the Canuckleheads and is just to close to breaking out to fall flat (I hope) Can tonight be his big night? I hope so.

Douglas Murray

#3 / Defenseman / San Jose Sharks



Mar 12, 1980

Why not? He's on an Olympic team right? Taylor Pyatt layed a good check into him last game. I think he's scared now. 0 goals 0 assists for 0 points tonight.

The Infirmary

Phoenix Coyotes Injuries


Player Injury Type Injury Date
Vernon Fiddler other-excused 12/31/2009
James Vandermeer other-excused 12/31/2009

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Daniel Winnik arm 12/27/2009
Kurt Sauer head 10/07/2009

San Jose Sharks Injuries

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Jody Shelley other-excused 11/10/2009