The Phoenix Coyotes and Dallas Stars meet tonight for their very last showdown of four in this regular season. Dallas leads the series 2-1-0, so the Coyotes will look to get a win and even things up a bit, but a win could also help them climb into the playoff picture. Right now, they’re in ninth place in the West and have 25 points, but consider that four different teams above that big bold line all have 26 points to their names right now–including Dallas.
Phoenix is coming off a harsh loss to the St. Louis Blues on March 7. Though they were able to come out of a one-goal hole and Shane Doan started to build some momentum, the Blues found a huge answer for the Coyotes’ efforts, scoring five unanswered goals for a 6-3 win. Coupled with a 2-0 loss to cap off the threefer series with the Anaheim Ducks, today Phoenix will want to avoid making it a three-game losing slump. They are back on home ice tonight, though.
Speaking of Doan, he’s been productive in his past few games–aside from the shutout against Anaheim, of course–and has points in four out of the past five. His all-time record against Dallas is 30 goals and 37 assists in 96 games. Lauri Korpikoski has six goals and five assists in 21 games. Matthew Lombardi‘s line is four goals and 11 helpers in 25 games. Keith Yandle is also great at providing assists against Dallas–he has 12 to go with three goals in 25 games. He is also streaking with four out of five along with Doan and Steve Sullivan.
On the Dallas side, keep an eye on Jaromir Jagr, who appears to be the embodiment of that Aaliyah song about age being nothing but a number. He’s scored four goals in his past three games.
Mike Smith, who was in for that loss to the Blues, holds a 6-1-5, 2.02 goals-against average and .924 save percentage against Dallas. He’s also shut them out twice, so look for him to be in net tonight.
The Coyotes shut out the Stars in their most recent meeting. Can they put up another win to even the series? The game begins at 6 p.m. Mountain (8 p.m. Eastern).