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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Tuesday, December 10th (All times Eastern)

Phoenix Coyotes (16-8-5) at Colorado Avalanche (20-8-0), 9 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Phoenix Coyotes will try to end their four-game road trip on a positive note Tuesday night as they visit the Colorado Avalanche and the Pepsi Center.

The Coyotes have gone 1-1-1 over the first three games of the swing, part of a span that has seen the club lose six of its past eight games. Phoenix was able to earn a point last time out on Friday, scoring a pair of third-period goals in a 3-2 overtime setback to the Vancouver Canucks.

David Moss and Antoine Vermette scored to force overtime and Mike Smith ended with 29 saves.

Though Phoenix was able to rally late, head coach Dave Tippett would like to see his club start earning some victories, beginning with tonight.

"There were some parts of our game I thought were all right," said Tippett following the loss to the Canucks. "We're trying to defend better, and we're giving up less shots and less chances against. But going into the trip, this game is about winning and getting points. We got only got three of six (points) and for where we are, we need a better percentage than that."

Tippett's club was minus captain Shane Doan on Friday due to the flu, while defenseman Derek Morris left the team to attend to a family matter. Neither player made the trip to Colorado as Doan was unable to practice on Monday and Morris remains away.

Doan leads Phoenix with 12 goals and is second with 23 points.

However, defenseman Zbynek Michalek could return for the first time in 10 games as he has been out since Nov. 14 due to a lower-body injury. He was able to practice on Tuesday and is likely a game-time decision.

Colorado is also coming off a loss in Vancouver as it dropped a 3-1 decision on Sunday. This time the Canucks were able to hold onto a lead as Roberto Luongo finished with 28 saves and came within eight seconds of a shutout.

Jamie McGinn scored late to get the Avalanche on the board and Jean-Sebastien Giguere lost for the first time in eight decisions this season, stopping 18- of-21 shots faced.

Colorado went 1-2-0 on its three-game road trip.

"I honestly felt we played a better game than them, and unfortunately we have nothing to show for the result," Colorado coach Patrick Roy said. "But, I mean, Luongo was good. Both goalies were good actually."

With Giguere having made back-to-back starts, Roy could go with Semyon Varlamov in net tonight. Varlamov is 3-4-1 with a 3.30 goals against average in his career versus the Coyotes, making 41 saves in a 4-3 overtime victory at Phoenix on Nov. 21.

Ryan O'Reilly scored the winner on a power play with 41.1 seconds left in overtime, giving the Avs their second straight win over the Coyotes.

Phoenix, though, has still won 10 of the previous 14 meetings overall and eight of its past 12 in Colorado.

Smith made 26 saves in the earlier loss, falling to 8-1-3 with a 1.85 GAA in 12 games (9) starts versus the Avs.

12/10 11:01:23 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
7:00pm Tonight
BUF
CAR
 
Final
NYY 5
BAL 0
Final
CLE 0
KAN 2
Final
TOR 14
SEA 4
Final
DET 0
CWS 2
Final
ATL 0
PIT 1
Final
TEX 4
HOU 3
Final
CHC 0
STL 8
Final
MIN 2
ARI 6
Final
OAK 8
ANA 4
Final
SDP 1
COL 0
Final
LOS 2
SFG 5
 
7:05pm Tonight
NYY
BAL
 
7:05pm Tonight
CLE
KAN
7:05pm Tonight
WAS
NYM
 
7:07pm Tonight
TOR
SEA
 
7:08pm Tonight
DET
CWS
 
7:10pm Tonight
CIN
MIL
 
7:10pm Tonight
MIA
PHI
 
7:10pm Tonight
ATL
PIT
 
7:10pm Tonight
BOS
TAM
 
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
NYI 3
OTT 2
 
6:00pm Monday
NYI
OTT
 
Final
PIT 1
DET 2
Final
NYR 4
NJD 5
Final
PHI 2
TOR 3
 
Final
PHI 5
WAS 4
Final
WIN 2
MIN 1
Final
DAL 4
STL 3
Final
COL 2
ANA 5
Final
ANA 4
COL 0
Final
ARI 5
LOS 4
Final
LOS 4
ARI 3
7:00pm Tonight
BUF
CAR
 
7:00pm Tonight
CLB
PIT
 
7:30pm Tonight
MON
BOS
 
7:30pm Tonight
TAM
NAS
 
7:30pm Tonight
TOR
PHI
 
8:30pm Tonight
CHI
DET
 
9:00pm Tonight
VAN
SJS
 
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
ARI
 
10:30pm Tonight
SJS
VAN
 
Final
NYJ 19
CHI 27