Game Day: Phoenix Coyotes @ Colorado Avalanche
In one of three games on the Wednesday night schedule, the Colorado Avalanche host the Phoenix Coyotes at 7:30 MST. Sitting just two points apart, the Avs currently hold the fifth spot in the Western Conference while the Coyotes sit in ninth. Phoenix won three of four games between the two last season, including two occasions where the opposition failed to come up with a single goal.
Tonight, Phoenix looks to take their winning streak to three games whereas Colorado will try to make it two in a row. The Avs are 7-4-0, but only got their first home win on Sunday against the Kings, as Matt Duchene scored the game winner in the early moments of the third period and the game finished by a score of 3-2.
The two teams are among the highest-scoring in the Western Conference. The Avalanche currently have the best power play in the NHL at 29.4%, but the Coyotes completely shut them out on the man advantage last season. They've also killed off 34 of their last 37 opposition power plays.
With new acquisition Cal O'Reilly still on the shelf waiting to make his debut, he will not be facing off against brother Ryan tonight. Peter Mueller, Brandon Yip and Mark Olver are all listed as out indefinitely and will not dress for the Avalanche.
Quick Hits: Coyotes
♦ Coyotes' winger Radim Vrbata, who began his NHL career with Colorado, has taken off lately, recording six points in four games, including two goals and an assist against Los Angeles on Saturday.
♦ Scoring the game-winner (assisted by Vrbata) in overtime was Daymond Langkow, who now has seven points on the season.
♦ Goaltender Mike Smith made 36 stops in Saturday's win against Los Angeles. In his career against Colorado, he is 3-1-0-1 with a 1.70 goals-against average and a .934 save-percentage.
♦ Martin Hanzal had two assists and blocked four shots in the last game. He sits third in team scoring, just one point behind Ray Whitney and Shane Doan.
Quick Hits: Avalanche
♦ Matt Duchene's goal on Sunday was his first in seven games. Three of his four points against Phoenix are goals.
♦ Left wing Gabriel Landeskog is the NHL rookie with the most shots on goal thus far this season. He has seven points in his first 11 games. He also has 26 hits.
♦ The last meeting between these two teams was settled in extra time. David Jones set a franchise record for regular season overtime goals last season (3) and already has one this season against Toronto.
♦ Jones leads the Avs in scoring, tied with Ryan O'Reilly, who leads in faceoff-percentage (60.5%) and Kyle Quincey, who has a four-game point streak going.