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Coyotes Game 33 Preview: Coyotes look to get a win streak going against Avalanche

The Arizona Coyotes are back as they face off against the Colorado Avalanche at the Mullett Arena.

NHL: Arizona Coyotes at Colorado Avalanche Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Game Preview

The Arizona Coyotes love playing at Mullett Arena. They have a 5-3-2 record at home compared to a 6-13-3 record on the road as they make their temporary home one of the toughest barns to play in.

We saw that again in the Yotes’ last game, a 2-1 shootout win over the Los Angeles Kings. It was a sold win that saw the Desert Dogs take an early lead and not trail once during the matchup.

The Coyotes tend to make the same mistakes over and over again, but they did a good job limiting them last game. The Coyotes only had eight penalty minutes, good for one of the most penalized teams in the NHL, and the Kings only had two power play opportunities. However, Los Angeles scored with one of their two power play opportunities, so things still need improvement.

Unfortunately, the Coyotes will be without a key player, rookie Matias Maccelli. Maccelli was injured in the Yotes’ last game and will miss the next six weeks with a lower body. Maccelli is currently second among rookies in points and has been a big part of the Coyotes’ offense.

But if any team isn’t going to feel sorry that the Coyotes are dealing with injuries, it’s the Colorado Avalanche. Colorado has lost several players to injuries, including their two biggest forwards, Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog.

Losing key players looked like they would significantly impact the Avalanche, but they seem to have found their stride. They come into tonight’s game riding a four-game win streak and are within reach of reclaiming the top spot in the Central.

Tonight will be the second of a two-game road trip for the Avalanche, having beaten the Nashville Predators 3-2 in overtime last Friday. It was the second time the Avalanche beat the Predators in the past week, with their other two matchups being a 1-0 shootout win over the New York Islanders and a 2-1 overtime victory against the Montréal Canadiens.

The Avalanche are finding ways to win despite missing their best players despite the tight games. Expect them to come out ready to play against the Coyotes tonight.

Players to Watch

Arizona: Nick Schmaltz - Schmaltz had the Coyotes’ lone goal against the Kings, his sixth of the season. He comes into tonight’s game riding a five-game point streak.

Colorado: Mikko Rantanen - The 26-year-old forward has two goals and two assists in his last two teams and has been a crucial part of the Avalanche’s offense. He comes into tonight’s game with 23 goals in 32 games.

Injuries

Arizona: Matias Maccelli (lower body), Liam O’Brien (upper body), Bryan Little (ear), Andrew Ladd (knee)

Colorado: Martin Kaut (questionable, upper body), Valeri Nichushkin (questionable, lower body), Andrew Cogliano (shoulder), Nathan MacKinnon (upper body), Josh Manson (lower body), Bowen Byram (lower body), Gabriel Landeskog (knee), Darren Helm (hip)

Puck Drop

Tonight’s games will be at 7:00 pm Arizona time and will air on Bally Sports Arizona Extra and ESPN 620AM.