Following a five-game roadtrip in which they went 2-2-1 on, the Arizona Coyotes (8-7-2) returned home to the valley and will face the Los Angeles Kings (10-3-3) inside Mullett Arena tonight at 7 p.m.
Overall, Arizona were able to take five points from a possible 10 with two of the losses being decided by one goal.
Coyotes Roadtrip (Click Score for Game Recap):
- 2-1 L, St. Louis Blues, Nov. 9.
- 7-5 W, Nashville Predators, Nov. 11.
- 4-3 OTL, Dallas Stars, Nov. 14.
- 3-2 W, Columbus Blue Jackets, Nov. 16.
- 5-2 L, Winnipeg Jets, Nov. 18.
The ‘Yotes spent 11-total days away from the desert, including time off in-between games.
In their most recent contest, the Coyotes offense couldn’t get into a rhythm as they eventually fell to the Jets 5-2 two days ago.
Still, Arizona currently sit in fifth place with 18 points in the Central Division as they have flip-flopped with the Blues for fourth over the past couple weeks.
Knowing that they have a difficult challenge ahead, can the Coyotes be defensively-well structured and defeat the third-best team in the Pacific Division, the Kings?
Here is all you need to know before puck-drop at 7 p.m.
Tonight, this will already be the third time that the Kings and ‘Yotes have shared the ice together in the regular season.
However, they also played a two-game mini-series in Melbourne, Australia during the preseason as well.
First, Kings captain Anže Kopitar and three other Kings had two points each in a 6-3 win over Arizona on Oct. 24 in L.A.
Then, despite Coyotes defenseman J.J. Moser scoring a goal and having an assist, the Kings went into Mullett Arena and came out with a 5-4 victory on Oct. 27.
As of recently, Los Angeles are on a two-game winning streak and have a record of 7-1-2 in their last 10 games.
Unlike Arizona, the Kings were able to not just beat the Blues 5-1 on Nov. 18, but they scored four of their goals in the first period alone.
Arriving in Tempe, L.A. left wing Adrian Kempe has registered the most points on his team with 18 in 16 games (8 goals, 10 assists). He is also tied in goals alongside Kopitar.
Kempe is on-pace to beat his highest mark of his career as he had 67 points last year, and 42 goals.
Kings left wing Kevin Fiala leads in assists as his elite, playmaking ability has gave him 13 assists in 16 games.
As the fifth-best team in-terms of goal differential in the Western Conference, Los Angeles are +19.
Since signing a one-year contract with L.A. in the offseason, Kings goaltender Cam Talbot has been a revelation for their squad.
Posting a 9-3-1 record, 2.02 goals-against-average and a .930 save percentage, Talbot has given the Kings reliable goaltending when they need it.
Kings forward Viktor Arvidsson (back) won’t be available tonight as he will be out month-to-month on injured reserve.
On the other side, Coyotes left wing Clayton Keller remains a point-per-game player as he has 7 goals and 10 assists in 17 games.
Ex-King Sean Durzi will get to play his former teammates one, last time this regular season tonight.
So far since leaving Los Angeles, Durzi has amassed 5 goals and 7 assists for 12 points in 17 games.
If Arizona head coach André Toruigny continues the trend of splitting his goaltenders’ starts 50/50, Connor Ingram should get the nod tonight.
In 8 games, Ingram is 6-1 with a .918 save-percentage and 2.75 goals-against-average.
Defenseman Travis Dermott (upper body) and centers Jack McBain (lower body) and Barrett Hayton (upper body) have all been placed on injured reserve and out week-to-week.
There is no new developments of Coyotes defenseman Juuso Välimäki’s (upper body) situation since being hit in the face by a puck against Dallas, at the time of reporting.
Once there is, stay up-to-date with Burn City Sports.