5) Thursday February 16th Phoenix Coyotes at Los Angeles Kings
As the trade deadline looms, this Pacific Division battle may be more important than most think. The Los Angeles Kings have made some wholesale changes coming into this year and hope to contend for the Pacific Division title, while there are a lot of question marks surrounding the Coyotes. At this point in the year, we should know if these teams will be buyers or sellers. Both of these teams will likely be buyers, and should be playoff teams. The winner of this game may see a boost that carries them through the trade deadline.
4) Saturday March 31st Anaheim Ducks vs Phoenix Coyotes
This will be the last Pacific Division game on the Phoenix Coyotes 2011-2012 schedule. With the season winding down, the Coyotes should be in position to make the playoffs, but the Ducks might not be so lucky. Anaheim might need this game to keep their playoff hopes alive while the Coyotes may be looking to move up in the standings to grab home ice advantage.
3) Wednesday December 28th Boston Bruins vs Phoenix Coyotes
Just a few days after Christmas the defending Stanley Cup Champion Boston Bruins will roll into the desert to take on the Phoenix Coyotes. By this point in the year, Coyote fans should have a good idea of what kind of team they are working with this year. The team however will have their hands full with the Bruins, and it will be interesting to see how the Coyotes play against this top notch opponent. As the calendar year comes to an end, the Phoenix Coyotes will look for a big win to ring in the new year.
2) Saturday October 15th Winnepeg Jets vs Phoenix Coyotes
This will be the first game of the 2011 season the Phoenix Coyotes play at Jobing.com Arena, and may be a hard ticket to come by. The Winnipeg Jets, formerly the Atlanta Thrashers, are not expected to be a great team this year by any means, however with all the talk of the Coyotes moving to Winnipeg the last few years we might see a rivalry bloom between these two teams. The fans in Phoenix will get their first chance to see their 2011 Phoenix Coyotes on this Saturday in October, and hope this isn’t the last season opener they can attend.
1) Monday November 21st Phoenix Coyotes at Washington Capitals
This will be a big road test fairly early in the season for the Phoenix Coyotes. Coming into this season, the Coyotes don’t really have a clear identity. The Capitals however, with their additions of Troy Brouwer and Joel Ward, are going to be a gritty and tough team. Last year in Washington, the team put an emphasis on defense and finished in 1st place in the east. This game might be a defining point in the season for Phoenix, as they will have to decide whether they will go toe to toe with Washington on the defensive end, or try to outplay them on the offensive end of the ice.