banner

NHL

more stats

NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Saturday, December 21st (All times Eastern)

Phoenix Coyotes (18-10-6) at Ottawa Senators (14-17-6), 2 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - A pair of struggling clubs will fight for a much-needed win on Saturday afternoon, as the Ottawa Senators welcome the Phoenix Coyotes for a battle at Canadian Tire Centre.

The Coyotes enter Saturday's matinee on a three-game slide and also have dropped five of seven and nine of their last 13 tilts. Ottawa hasn't fared much better recently, losing two straight as part of a 6-10-2 stretch over its last 18 games.

Phoenix has lost the first two tests on a four-game road trip, giving the Coyotes four defeats in their past five games as the guest. The club is only 8-7-4 as the road team this season and will complete the trek Monday in Buffalo.

After dropping a 3-1 decision Tuesday in Montreal, the Coyotes were dealt a 2-1 shootout setback by the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday. James van Riemsdyk and Joffrey Lupul both scored in the shootout to help the Leafs snap a two-game slide with the close win at Air Canada Centre.

Martin Hanzal tied the game late in the third for Phoenix, while Mike Smith stopped 26-of-27 shots through regulation and overtime.

"We wanted to play a hard road game. Our tempo got better as the game went on. We had multiple opportunities in the third period to tie and then take the lead. We got the one we needed," said Coyotes coach Dave Tippett. "It's a step in the right direction. We're a little banged up and looking for some guys to elevate their game."

Coyotes captain Shane Doan has missed the last six games with an illness that Phoenix has categorized as Rocky Mountain fever. Doan is on medication to battle the bacterial disease and his status is considered week-to-week.

Defenseman Zbynek Michalek will miss a second straight contest today for the Coyotes and is out indefinitely with a lower-body injury.

The Senators, meanwhile, could be without forward Mika Zibanejad on Saturday after he sustained an upper-body injury in Ottawa's most recent loss, a 4-2 home defeat on Thursday against Florida. Zibanejad, who has eight goals and seven assists this season, is considered day-to-day and will be a game-time decision for this afternoon's tilt.

Ottawa lost its second straight game in regulation on Thursday despite going into the closing minutes of the third period tied with the Panthers. Tom Gilbert scored the go-ahead power-play goal for Florida with 2:32 remaining in the third and Tomas Kopecky added the insurance tally just 51 seconds later with a shorthanded goal.

Chris Neil and Jason Spezza scored for the Senators, who have dropped four of six. Craig Anderson took the loss despite 31 stops.

"It's my job to stop the puck," said Anderson. "It's one of those things where we were there, we were close (to winning). But close isn't good enough."

The Senators, who began a three-game homestand on Thursday, fell to 7-10-3 as the host this season. Ottawa will close the residency when it welcomes Pittsburgh to town on Monday.

Ottawa has gotten the better of the Coyotes in recent years, claiming seven of the past nine overall encounters in this series and winning six straight on home ice. Phoenix's last win in Canada's capital city came on Dec. 12, 1998.

12/21 10:39:19 ET

Other Stories

Hurricanes

Canes open camp under new coach Peters 5
Blue Jackets beat Hurricanes in exhibition opener

Cam Atkinson scored twice and Anton Forsberg made 29 saves to help a Columbus Blue Jackets split squad beat the Carolina Hurricanes 4-3 on Sunday in the exhibition opener for both teams.

Related Stories
  • NFL: NY Giants at Washington

    Thursday at 8:25 pm on WRAL-TV

  • ACC: Western Michigan at Virginia Tech

    Saturday at 12:25 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Arkansas at Texas A&M

    Saturday at 3:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Larry Fedora Press Conference

    Today at 11:45 am on 99.9 The Fan

  • NFL: Chicago at NY Jets

    Tonight at 9:00 on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CAR 3
CLB 4
Final
CAR 19
PIT 37
Final
NYY 5
TOR 2
Final
MIA 1
WAS 2
Final
BAL 2
BOS 3
Final
PIT 1
MIL 0
Final
ATL 2
NYM 10
Final
TAM 5
CWS 10
Final
MIN 2
CLE 7
Final
KAN 5
DET 2
Final
HOU 8
SEA 3
Final
CHC 5
LOS 8
Final
ANA 1
TEX 2
Final
OAK 8
PHI 6
Final
COL 8
ARI 3
Final
SDP 8
SFG 2
Final
STL 2
CIN 7
7:05pm Tonight
NYY
BAL
 
7:05pm Tonight
CLE
KAN
 
7:07pm Tonight
TOR
SEA
 
7:08pm Tonight
DET
CWS
 
7:10pm Tonight
ATL
PIT
 
8:05pm Tonight
TEX
HOU
 
8:05pm Tonight
CHC
STL
 
8:10pm Tonight
MIN
ARI
 
10:05pm Tonight
OAK
ANA
 
10:10pm Tonight
SDP
COL
 
10:10pm Tonight
LOS
SFG
 
Final
CAR 3
CLB 4
Final
WAS 1
BUF 0
Final
CLB 4
STL 3
Final
EDM 3
CAL 1
Final
CAL 1
EDM 0
1:30pm Today
NYI
OTT
 
6:00pm Tonight
NYI
OTT
 
7:00pm Tonight
PIT
DET
 
7:00pm Tonight
NYR
NJD
 
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
TOR
 
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
WAS
 
8:00pm Tonight
WIN
MIN
 
8:30pm Tonight
DAL
STL
 
9:00pm Tonight
COL
ANA
 
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
COL
 
10:00pm Tonight
ARI
LOS
 
10:30pm Tonight
LOS
ARI
 
Final
CLE 21
BAL 23
Final
STL 31
DAL 34
Final
DET 19
GBP 7
Final
NYG 30
HOU 17
Final
JAC 17
IND 44
Final
NOS 20
MIN 9
Final
NEP 16
OAK 9
Final
BUF 10
SDC 22
Final
CIN 33
TEN 7
Final
PHI 37
WAS 34
Final
ARI 23
SFX 14
Final
SEA 26
DEN 20
Final
MIA 15
KAN 34
Final
CAR 19
PIT 37
8:30pm Tonight
NYJ
CHI