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Coyotes Game 16 Preview: Arizona goes into St. Louis shorthanded

The Coyotes are riding a three-game losing streak and half-a-dozen players are out with injures as they get set to take on the Blues.

NHL: Arizona Coyotes at Nashville Predators Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Game Preview

The Arizona Coyotes are coming off of another loss which extended their losing streak to three games and their total record to 1-13-1, putting them at last in the NHL by a decent margin. They’re now making their way to St. Louis to take on the Blues, who are also riding their own three-game losing streak.

The Coyotes’ powerplay struggles continued last game, as they went one-for-six, and currently rank 30th out of 32 in the NHL in that department with 12.5%. In addition, they continue to rank dead last in the league in goals per game, shots on goal, shooting percentage, and goals allowed per game. All this isn’t a good combination when you’re the most undisciplined team in the league and constantly taking penalties.

Do you know what else isn’t good for the most undisciplined team in the NHL? When they have to face the second-ranked powerplay in the NHL, the Blues have a whopping 32.4% conversion rate. They’re seventh in goals per game, ninth in shooting percentage and shots per game as well, showing that they have just been a force to be reckoned with offensively this season. They’re currently 8-4-2 on the season and rank fourth in the Central Division.

In net, Scott Wedgewood is confirmed to play for the Coyotes. He is 1-3-1 on the season, rocking a .907 SV% and 0.86 goals saved above expected (GSAx). Since joining Arizona, he is 1-1-0 with a .939 SV% and 1.96 GSAx, and he’s been rock solid in net.

In net for the Blues, you can anticipate seeing Jordan Binnington. He’s been excellent for St. Louis this season, arguably one of the most valuable players, as he holds a 6-3-2 record to go with a .915 SV% and 0.74 GSAx. However, he’s coming off a rough game where he let in five goals on route to a 5-4 loss to the Edmonton Oilers on Sunday.

The Blues’ leading scorer thus far is Jordan Kyrou, who has 16 points (6 goals, 10 assists) through 14 games played, averaging 16:03 time on ice per game. He’s currently riding a four-game point streak in which he’s put up six points through that span. Their leading goal scorer is Vladimir Tarasenko, who has seven goals through 14 games played while averaging 17:08 per game. He’s currently on a three-game goal-scoring streak.

The Coyotes’ leading point scorer is Shayne Gostisbehere, who currently has 12 points (2 goals, 10 assists) through 15 games played, averaging 20:12 per game. Arizona’s leading goal scorer is Lawson Crouse, who has four goals through 15 games played, rough.

The Coyotes are going to need more from Jakob Chychrun going forward. He finally got on the board on Saturday against the Nashville Predators and now has one goal and two points through 15 games played this season. Hopefully, he can find a way to continue building off of that.

Players to Watch

Arizona: Clayton Keller - Keller needs to be better with the contract that he has. Just three goals and six points through 15 games played won’t cut it. He played a whopping 25:43 last game, and you can tell he wants a goal. He hasn’t scored since October 25th against the Florida Panthers. Luckily, Keller tends to come up big against his hometown team.

St. Louis: Ryan O’Reilly - O’Reilly is definitely somebody to keep your eye on tonight. He hasn’t recorded a point in his last five games, which means he’s due for a breakout, and what better chance to do it than against the league’s worst team?

Injuries

Arizona: Andrew Ladd (IR-NR - COVID), Carter Hutton (IR - Lower-Body), Johan Larsson (OUT - COVID), Ryan Dzingel (IR - Upper-Body), Christian Fischer (IR - Upper-Body), Nick Schmaltz (IR - Upper-Body), Conor Timmins (IR - Knee), Dmitrij Jaškin (IR -Knee)

St. Louis: Brayden Schenn (OUT - Upper-Body), Torey Krug (IR-NR - COVID), Oskar Sundqvist (LTIR - Knee), Niko Mikkola (IR-NR - COVID)

Puck Drop

The game will be at the Enterprise Center at 6:00 PM on BSMW and BSAZ.