View From Carolina
For more information on the Hurricanes and their preview go to Canes Country
Like the Coyotes the Hurricanes are a relatively young club with a new starting goalie that was previously a backup goalie. Additionally, both clubs are also in last place in their respective divisions, though the competition in the Metropolitan Division is considerably more difficult.
The Hurricanes record is currently 4-5-2 and they are looking to bounce back after falling 5-3 to the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday. This marks the third loss for the young club losing to 2-1 to the St. Louis Blues and 4-3 to the Anaheim Ducks in a shootout.
Notably it has been announced that Defenseman Roland McKeown will be making his debut tonight and could potentially take the spot of former Coyotes player Klas Dahlbeck. Another player who once wore the Coyotes uniform that could be playing tonight is Josh Jooris.
View From Arizona
After some terrible mistakes against the Buffalo Sabres, the Coyotes need to turn the corner on the scoresheet and to resume the excellent play seen in three of their last six games. Despite what their record reflects, the Coyotes were the better team against the Philadelphia Flyers, the New Jersey Devils and everyone on the New York Islanders except John Tavares. These last two games haven’t shown that same level of play and that is concerning. Now that starting goalie Antti Raanta has returned, the rest of the team needs to get their game back on track to start putting a few more marks in the win column.
How many odd-man rushes will the Coyotes allow?
The Coyotes allowed multiple 2-on-1s and even a 2-on-0 in their game against Buffalo. This is simply not acceptable and Head Coach Rick Tocchet made it a priority in Friday’s practice. It will be something to watch for in tonight’s game.
Will the special teams improve?
As not great as the power play has been the penalty kill has been even worse. The Coyotes are currently 19th in the league for converting on power play chances but they are 30th for allowing goals on the penalty kill. Both units need to step up their game in order for the team to be successful.
Can the team put together a full 60 minute game?
Even in their lone winning game the Coyotes have yet to put together a full 60-minutes of consistently good play. The flashes of good have been very positive but they need to be more frequent and sustained than they are currently.
Players to Watch
Carolina – Jeff Skinner: There are a ton of exciting, talented players on the ‘Canes roster but Skinner is very tenacious on the puck and has a penchant for scoring on his own rebounds. His smooth, speedy skating and ability to dance around defenders also makes him a particular against the Coyotes.
Arizona – Clayton Keller: Keller is the bright spot in the terrible start of the season for the Coyotes. Watching him is worth the price of admission for any Coyotes game.
Lee Stempniak: (lower body) Stempniak was injured prior to the season and there is currently no timeline for his return.
Brett Pesce: (upper body) Pesce suffered a concussion after getting hit in the head with a puck during practice and did not travel with the team for their two game road trip.
Niklas Hjalmarsson: (upper body) Hjalmarsson was placed on the injured reserve after
Jakob Chychrun: (lower body) Chychrun is still out indefinitely with a knee injury, he is missed by the team.
Tonight’s game will be at 6 p.m. Arizona time at Gila River Arena. It will be airing on Fox Sports Arizona and KTAR ESPN Phoenix 620 AM.