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Coyotes face Flames for second to last time of the season

The Arizona Coyotes start a three game roadtrip to Western Canada tonight against the Calgary Flames.

Calgary Flames v Arizona Coyotes Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Game Preview

After a flat night against the St. Louis Blues, the Arizona Coyotes faced off against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Arizona desperately needs points, and against one of the top teams in the league the Coyotes played like they wanted to win. It wasn’t the most commanding win but a win is a win.

The Arizona Coyotes defeat of the Maple Leafs was all thanks to timely scoring and solid defense. Arizona got goals from Alex Galchenyuk and Josh Archibald less then two minutes apart from each other early in the second period after a stifling first period. The Coyotes were able to hold onto that lead against one of the better offenses in the league, which hopefully is an experience they can build off of.

Arizona’s game against the Leafs has a lot of elements they should look to replicate tonight. They controlled the play and the managed to limit the Leafs’ shots and kept them to the outside. They also managed to win 54% of their faceoff, an area that the Coyotes have struggled in as of late, partially thanks to the return of Brad Richardson from injury who won 64% of his faceoffs. They also had a perfect penalty kill, although the number of penalties may be an area of concern.

Like the Coyotes’ last opponent, the Calgary Flames are a good team. They are currently the top team of the Pacific and have been one of the best teams this season. They have a young, highly skilled core that should keep them in the playoff contention for foreseeable future. They have four players with over twenty goal seasons on the season, Johnny Gaudreau, Sean Monahan, Elias Lindholm, and Matthew Tkachuk, with Gaudreau being the oldest player at 25.

Calgary has had a rocky return since coming back from the All Star Game. Since the start of February they have a record of 2-3-2. In all of those games Calgary scored at least two goals, which should still be an issue for the Coyotes who struggle to score.

The Calgary Flames score a lot of goals. They have scored 212 goals this season, third most in the NHL. Their defense is not as impressive, but 170 goals allowed for eleventh in the league isn’t bad. Unsurprisingly they have good power play (22.6%, 7th), and an extremely bad penalty kill (78.1%, 23rd).

Players to Watch

Arizona: Alex Galchenyuk - When the Coyotes added Galchenyuk it seemed likely he would lead the team in goals. While its taken some time Galchenyuk’s 13 goals leads the team.

Calgary: Elias Lindholm - One of the two players with over twenty goals, Lindholm has two goals and four assists in the last four games.

Injuries

Arizona: Richard Panik (questionable, illness), Kyle Capobianco (lower body), Nick Schmaltz (lower body), Michael Grabner (eye), Antti Raanta (lower body), Jason Demers (knee), Christian Dvorak (pectoral)

Calgary: James Neal (questionable, upper body), Michael Stone (arm)

Poll

Poll

Can the Coyotes limit the Flames to two or fewer goals?

This poll is closed

  • 36%
    Yes
    (7 votes)
  • 63%
    No
    (12 votes)
19 votes total Vote Now