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Carolina Hurricanes at Arizona Coyotes: Game Preview

A four game road trip begins for the Canes tonight in the desert.

NHL: Carolina Hurricanes at Arizona Coyotes Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

The Carolina Hurricanes are in a 2-5-0 tailspin, with three of their last four losses coming on home ice. What better time for an eight-day trip through four Western outposts to try to clear their head and get back on the right track as a busy November begins?

First up: a visit to lovely and scenic Glendale, Arizona, to face the similarly surprising Arizona Coyotes, who have caught fire in the past two weeks. After beginning the season 2-5-0 (sound familiar?), the Coyotes have ticked off four straight wins, and would be within a point of a playoff spot with a win tonight.

Vital Statistics

Category Hurricanes Bruins
Category Hurricanes Bruins
Record 8-6 11-5
Goals/Game 2.79 3.31
Goals Against/Game 2.71 2.06
Shots/Game 30.9 34.3
Faceoff % 49.1% 53.3%
Power Play % (Rank) 10.0% (14) 31.9% (1)
Penalty Kill % (Rank) 70.8% (14) 85.7% (4)
ES Corsi For % 55.61% 51.66%
ES PDO 101.2% 101.0
PIM/Game 8:38 6:30

Goaltender #1

Category Petr Mrazek Tuukka Rask
Category Petr Mrazek Tuukka Rask
Record 5-5 11-5
Save % .894 .939
GAA 2.73 1.96

Goaltender #2

Category Curtis McElhinney Jaroslav Halak
Category Curtis McElhinney Jaroslav Halak
Record 3-1 0-0
Save % .943 N/A
GAA 1.70 N/A

Game Notes

  • Trips to the Valley of the Sun have historically been fruitful for Carolina. They’re 6-1-1 all time in Glendale, but one of those losses came last year - 363 days ago, to be exact - in a 2-1 shootout loss. Overall, the Hurricanes are 39-30-1 with eight ties against the Coyotes franchise, which includes their years as the first incarnation of the Winnipeg Jets.
  • Rod Brind’Amour gave no indication yesterday who would be starting tonight, but it might not matter because all three of the Hurricanes’ goalies have traditionally played strong against the Coyotes albeit in limited action. Scott Darling, in particular, has had the Coyotes’ number: 2-0-1, one shutout, a GAA of 0.97 and a save percentage of .961.
  • Not to be outdone, both Petr Mrazek and Curtis McElhinney have never lost to the Coyotes in six combined starts.
  • In the something-has-to-give department, the Hurricanes own the league’s worst penalty kill at 66.7% and the Coyotes bring up the rear on the power play at 12.9%. If you need to make a run to the fridge during the game, a Hurricane skating to the penalty box would be a good cue to do so.
  • However, on the penalty kill, the Coyotes are spectacular. Ranked second in the league, they’ve allowed just three goals to opposing power plays all year, and to boot have scored six (!) shorthanded goals in eleven games. When your penalty kill has more goals than your power play, you’re living well.
  • It’s a homecoming tonight for Canes forward Jordan Martinook. The Coyotes’ 2012 second-round pick spent four seasons in the desert before being traded to Carolina for Marcus Kruger in May.
  • With an assist tonight, Sebastian Aho will set an all-time NHL record. No player has ever started his season with assists in thirteen straight games, and Aho can break the tie he shares with Wayne Gretzky and Ken Linseman tonight.
  • Since we have a pair of late games tonight and tomorrow combined with two Checkers home games, our game hub will be a spot to talk about them both. We’ll have the posts up an hour before the Checkers take the ice (7:00 tonight, 6:00 tomorrow) and you can chat about the Checkers before the Canes get underway.