Despite the 3-2 loss on Thursday, the Arizona Coyotes played very well against the Nashville Predators, one of the best teams in the Western Conference. The Desert Dogs led the game 2-1 going into the third period with goals from Christian Dvorak and Oliver Ekman-Larsson. Unfortunately Kyle Turris tied the game less than a minute into the third, and Kevin Fiala scored again at 4:22. The Coyotes came close a few times but where unable to tie the game in final 15 minutes.
Tonight’s game could see the return of Antti Raanta. Raanta was able to practice with the team on Friday and will be a game day decision. Raanta has missed the the last five games with a lower body injury. Arizona is 3-2 in that stretch, so while Raanta has definitely been missed by the team, Darcy Kuemper and Adin Hill have played well enough to keep the team going.
The Arizona Coyotes will face off tonight against the Minnesota Wild for the last time this season. Thanks to the fact that the Coyotes have only played against the Wild in February and March, months where they have been playing much better, the 'Yotes have won their previous two games against the team from the State of Hockey. Arizona won the first game 4-3 in overtime, and their last game saw the Coyotes finish 5-3. Giving up three goals tends to not work long term though, so hopefully the Coyotes won’t test their luck with that trend tonight.
Since facing off against Arizona on the first of the month Minnesota has a record of 4-3. Two of their four wins had them beating the Detroit Red Wings and Vancouver Canucks, two teams nowhere near the playoff race. The Wild were able to notch a 6-2 win against the Carolina Hurricanes, and team that could theoretically compete for a Wildcard spot in the East, and a 4-2 win against last night against the Pacific Division leading Vegas Golden Knights. Combine that with a 4-1 loss to the lowly Edmonton Oilers and 7-1 and 5-1 routs by the Colorado Avalanche and its tough to get a feel on how the Wild are doing down the final stretch.