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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Tuesday, March 11th (All times Eastern)

Phoenix Coyotes (20-24-11) at Florida Panthers (24-33-7), 7:30 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Phoenix Coyotes will try to help their postseason chances by winning for the fourth time in five games when they visit the Florida Panthers for Tuesday's battle at BB&T Center.

The Coyotes picked up a 4-3 shootout win Monday in Tampa for their third win in four outings. Radim Vrbata scored the winner in the decisive phase to help Phoenix edge the Lightning at Tampa Bay Times Forum.

With the win, Phoenix moved within one point of Dallas for the last playoff spot in the Western Conference. The Stars were scheduled to play on Monday, but that home game against the Columbus Blue Jackets was postponed early in the first period due to a medical emergency to Dallas forward Rich Peverley.

Peverley, who had a procedure performed during the preseason to correct an irregular heartbeat, was taken to a local Dallas hospital and is in stable condition. The Stars made the trip to St. Louis for tonight's game against the Blues .

Vrbata had the second chance for Phoenix in the shootout and he faked to the backhand before lifting it high past Ben Bishop. Mike Smith then stretched the left pad out to the post to stop Ryan Callahan's stuff attempt for the win.

Martin Erat, Brandon McMillan and Mikkel Boedker all scored for the Coyotes, while Smith stopped 28 shots.

"I think we responded well to get the two points here," said Smith. "We've been giving up too many leads lately, but we held tough and we're able to get a big win."

Phoenix is playing the third test of a four-game road trip tonight. The club is just 11-13-8 as the visiting team this season.

The Panthers are 16 points out of a playoff spot in the East and are likely going to miss the postseason for the 12th time in 13 seasons. With only three wins over its last 12 games, Florida also doesn't seem like a team primed to play a spoiler role down the stretch.

Florida has lost two of its last three games and both setbacks during that stretch came against the Boston Bruins. The Panthers lost 4-1 at Boston last Tuesday then beat a visiting Buffalo club by a 2-0 score on Friday before dropping a home test against the Bruins on Sunday.

The Panthers scored first on Sunday and were tied with Boston at 1-1 after 40 minutes, but the Bruins wound up dominating the third period to claim a 5-2 victory at BB&T Center.

Jimmy Hayes scored both goals for the Panthers, who have lost six of their last eight. Roberto Luongo gave up four goals on 41 shots in defeat.

"They came out hard in the third," said Luongo, who fell to 1-1-0 since returning to the Panthers via a trade last week.

Florida, which fell to 12-14-4 as the host this season, is capping a three- game homestand tonight.

Tuesday's game is the first encounter between the Coyotes and Panthers since Phoenix recorded a 2-1 regulation win in South Florida on Dec. 20, 2011. The Coyotes have claimed three of four in the series overall and have won two in a row and four of five in Sunrise, Fla.

03/11 10:41:25 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
ORL 83
CHA 98
8:00pm Tonight
SAV
NCCU
 
8:30pm Tonight
CHI
CAR
 
Final
PHI 2
UTA 6
 
1:05pm Today
MIA
FIU
 
1:05pm Today
DET
FLASO
 
Final
HOU 105
CLE 103
Final
ORL 83
CHA 98
Final
BOS 101
GSW 106
Final
IND 94
PHI 74
Final
SAC 99
POR 110
Final
LAL 101
OKC 108
Final
DEN 92
NOP 99
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
TOR
 
7:30pm Tonight
BRK
GSW
 
7:30pm Tonight
MIA
PHO
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
LAC
 
8:30pm Tonight
DAL
NOP
 
Final
NIAG 57
FAIR 56
 
Final
PETE 68
IONA 60
 
Final
RIDE 59
MAR 49
 
Final
MAN 69
QUIN 65
 
Final
UCONN 81
SMU 73
Final
CAL 73
ORST 56
Final
HOU 72
SFLA 55
Final
PROV 77
MARQ 66
Final
WISC 68
MSU 61
Final
MON 63
SIENA 57
 
Final
WAKE 69
PITT 66
Final
STAN 70
OREG 73
Final
OSU 65
PURD 61
Final
COL 87
ARST 81
Final
UCLA 72
WASU 67
7:00pm Tonight
TEX
BAY
 
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SYR
UVA
 
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NCAT
COOK
 
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SHSU
CARK
 
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DELST
HAMP
 
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HOW
NORST
 
7:30pm Tonight
NWST
SELA
 
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STEPH
INCWORD
 
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MCNST
LAM
 
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SAV
NCCU
 
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NO
NICST
 
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ARKPB
JST
 
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ALAST
PVU
 
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ALAAM
TXSOU
 
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VT
BC
 
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MVSU
GRAM
 
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ISU
OKLA
 
Final
WIN 5
LOS 2
Final
PIT 5
CLB 3
Final
FLA 4
TAM 3
Final
WAS 4
TOR 0
Final
DAL 1
ANA 3
Final
VAN 6
STL 5
7:00pm Tonight
NYR
NAS
 
8:30pm Tonight
CHI
CAR
 
10:00pm Tonight
SJS
MON