The Phoenix Coyotes lost last night to the Nashville Predators, 4-2. The game was headlined by the three first period goals scored by Nashville en route to their impressive win. After back-to-back losses to Colorado and Anaheim prior to Monday night in Nashville, the Coyotes were disappointed after totaling a staggering 44 shots in each of the two previous losses, while only netting five goals over the two game span.
The Coyotes’ lingering issues defensively have emerged to be the main cause of the losing streak. Phoenix has yielded 88 shots over the last three games, while allowing an NHL-leading 714 shots on Mike Smith in his 22 games this season. The struggling Coyotes penalty kill has also been an issue of note, especially on Monday night when Nashville scored 2 out of their 4 goals on the power play. Coach Dave Tippet pointed out a lack of “covering open men” and “winning puck battles” as the two main problems with the Coyotes’ 28th ranked penalty kill unit.
On top of their defensive issues, forward Shane Doan left Monday night’s game with an apparent lower body injury. Following the game, Doan appeared to be alright, but is listed as day-to-day.
Martin Hanzal returned Monday night after the lower body injury he sustained on Saturday.
The Coyotes will travel to Minnesota to take on the Wild on Wednesday night.
-Tyler Jones, Howlin’ Hockey