Game Day: Phoenix Coyotes @ Dallas Stars

The Phoenix Coyotes' 6-3 opening night loss at the HP Pavilion on Saturday night, complete with several inopportune penalties and a frightening number of defensive breakdowns, will surely be something they'll want to bounce back from this afternoon as the puck drops at 5 p.m. Dallas time.  Shane Doan, celebrating his 35th birthday today, scored two power play goals and led his team with 6 of 29 shots on goal.  On the other end of the ice, new Phoenix goaltender Mike Smith saw a whopping 52 shots fired in his direction.  The Coyotes haven't allowed that many since early 1997.

Phoenix has won their last two contests in Dallas and have seemingly improved their power play, as all three goals scored on Saturday came on the man advantage.  Mike Smith has also won both games he's played against his old team since leaving the Stars' organization.
 



Photo: PhoenixCoyotes.com

Quick Hits: Coyotes
♦ In his first game in his second tour of duty for Phoenix, Daymond Langkow sported a 69% efficiency rate in the faceoff dot on Saturday night, and is also one assist away from his 100th with the Coyotes' franchise.
♦ All-Star defenseman Keith Yandle led his team in ice-time with 31:04. The second-most used skater was Martin Hanzal with...21:56. (Yikes!)
Michal Rozsival left the game against San Jose after being hit in the face with a puck.  He has been placed on the IR and the Coyotes have called up Chris Summers from the Portland Pirates.
Oliver Ekman-Larsson had the third goal for the Coyotes on Saturday, his second in the NHL.
♦ Phoenix won last season's series against the Stars, 4-2.  Birthday boy Shane Doan has 63 points in 87 games against them.

Quick Hits: Stars
♦ Leading with 7 points in those 6 games against Phoenix last season is Yandle's former All-Star teammate Loui Eriksson.  He has more career points (33) against them than anyone else in the NHL.
♦ Coyotes' fans no doubt remember Jamie Benn's goal with 4.8 seconds left before overtime on March 1st, erasing both points that Phoenix needed dearly to stay alive in the Western Conference race last season.  Benn is one point away from his 100th in the NHL.
♦ Former Coyote Vernon Fiddler will be back to face his old team for the first time since signing with the Stars in the off-season.
♦ New Dallas head coach Glen Gulutzan is 1-1 since his debut as 21st head coach in franchise history.
♦ Dallas captain Brenden Morrow is to the Stars as Shane Doan is to the Coyotes in terms of head-to-head meetings between the two, leading his team with 44 points against Phoenix.

Comments

Jordan Kuhns's picture

Both teams are coming off of unfavorable results in their last games. I get the feeling this will be as close to a defensive contest as it can get.