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Coyotes Game 40 Preview: Coyotes look to finally end losing streak against Sharks

The Arizona Coyotes have dropped their last five as they prepare to host the San Jose Sharks.

Arizona Coyotes v San Jose Sharks Photo by Kavin Mistry/NHLI via Getty Images

Game Preview

After dropping every game on their four-game road trip, the Arizona Coyotes returned home to the Mullett Arena. But the Mullett Magic didn’t happen, and the Coyotes fell 4-1 to the hungry Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Coyotes had a strong start but couldn’t keep it going against the Penguins. And after giving up multiple goals, the Coyotes’ penchant for penalties returned.

Arizona has taken a lot of penalties this season, averaging the second most in penalties per 60 minutes. After being good for a few games on the road, the Yotes responded with six penalties, three in the later half of the second period.

The penalties came at the absolute worst time. After giving up the lead in the second period, the Yotes responded with three penalties in the latter half and one right after the Penguins went up 3-1.

The Arizona Coyotes have been playing a lot of weaker teams lately, and tonight is no exception. The San Jose Sharks have the second-worst record in the Pacific Division and the fourth-worst in the NHL Western Conference. And for everyone watching the stands, they have one more point than the Coyotes, having played two more games.

San Jose has dropped their last two games, falling to the Boston Bruins and the Anaheim Ducks. Both games saw the Sharks giving up four goals in regulation, losing 5-4 in overtime to the Ducks and 4-2 to the Bruins. The Coyotes have been having a lot of problems generating offense as of late, and tonight’s game could be the perfect remedy.

This season the big story out of San Jose has been the resurgence of Erik Karlsson. Karlsson has 54 points through 41 games. Most of that is coming 5-on-5, with only 14 points coming on the power play.

The Coyotes will be facing off a team with a surprisingly good penalty kill for the second straight game. The Sharks have the second-best kill in the league, killing 84.0% of penalties.

Players to Watch

Arizona: Barrett Hayton - Hayton has four points in his last five games, including the Coyotes’ lone goal against the Penguins. He is spending time with Clayton Keller and Nick Schmaltz and, hopefully, will continue to rack up points.

San Jose: Logan Couture - Karlsson isn’t the only part of the Sharks’ offense. Couture scored his 15th goal in the Sharks’ game and has 33 points in 41 games this season.

Injuries

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

San Jose: Radim Šimek (upper body), Luke Kunin (knee), Markus Nutivaara (lower body)

Puck Drop

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