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Coyotes Game 42 Preview: Coyotes return home to host Bruins

The Arizona Coyotes are back from their four-game road trip and are set to play in the first game of a back-to-back tonight against the Boston Bruins.

Arizona Coyotes Vs. Boston Bruins at TD Garden Photo by Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Game Preview

The Arizona Coyotes are back at home after a four-game road trip that couldn’t have ended quickly enough. After a hot start and a win over the New Jersey Devils, things quickly snowballed out of control, and the Coyotes dropped the next three games. There were plenty of moments of solid hockey, but an inability to play a full sixty minutes doomed the Desert Dogs again and again. And things aren’t going to get any easier tonight.

The Coyotes are playing in the second back-to-back in two weeks, this time at home. Arizona will hopefully get better outcomes, but they are still in for a tough matchup tonight.

Arizona played against two of the top teams in the Metropolitan Division this past week, the Pittsburgh Penguins and the New York Rangers. The Boston Bruins aren’t a powerhouse of the Atlantic Division, but they are still a very good team that is on pace to cruise into a Wild Card spot easily.

Tonight’s game will be the second of a three-game Central Division road trip for the Bruins. They started things off against the Colorado Avalanche, a game they lost 4-3 in overtime.

The score sheet of the Bruins win should make Coyotes fans very nervous. The Avalanche finished the first period up 1-0, only to see the Bruins score three unanswered goals, including a power play goal in the second period. The Avalanche were able to push it to overtime with a goal from Gabriel Landeskog with 37 seconds left in regulation, but the Coyotes need to be very careful how they play.

PHNX’s Craig Morgan tweeted yesterday that Scott Wedgewood would get the tap tonight. Wedgewood made a splash when the team picked him up off waivers but has struggled as of late. He has been limited to two games since the start of the new year, starting against the New York Islanders and playing the final 18:18 after Karel Vejmelka was pulled against the Rangers.

Weggie gave up four goals against the Islanders, but the loss wasn’t all his fault. The Coyotes’ offense completely dried up, and they were limited to just 17 shots in a 4-0 shut-out loss.

Players to Watch

Arizona: Nick Schmaltz - Schmaltz was involved in all three of the Coyotes’ goals in their last game, scoring two and getting an assist on the third. The team could use a big game from Schmaltz, one of the few Coyotes players signed long-term.

Boston: Taylor Hall - Former Coyotes always seem to have big games against the Desert Dogs, so expect Hall to have a good matchup. He is currently tied for fourth on the team with 27 points in 40 games, and he has a goal and an assist in his last four games.

Injuries

Arizona: Antoine Roussel (questionable, COVID-19 protocol), Dysin Mayo (COVID-19 protocol), Barrett Hayton (hand), Jay Beagle (lower body), Dmitrij Jaškin (lower body), Carter Hutton (lower body), Conor Timmins (knee)

Boston: Matt Grzelcyk (questionable, upper body), Nick Foligno (questionable, upper body), Trent Frederic (upper body), Jakub Zboril (knee)

Puck Drop

Tonight’s game will be at Gila River Arena and will start at 7:00 pm Arizona time. It will be available on Bally Sports Arizona + and 620 AM.