Jan 16, 2014; Glendale, AZ, USA; Vancouver Canucks defenseman Jason Garrison (5) and Phoenix Coyotes center Martin Hanzal (11) battle for the puck during the second period at Jobing.com Arena. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Coyotes Looking To Get Back In The Race

Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Tonight the Phoenix Coyotes are facing off against the Vancouver Canucks. There’s a lot riding on this game. 4 points to be exact. If the Yotes take this game they’ll be within 2 points of the 8th playoff seat. If they lose they’ll fall behind by 6 points. Both teams have had rough starts to the second half of their season. Both teams have had recent success after longer than expected skids. What we have on our hands tonight Coyote fans, could very well be a knock down, drag out, punch in the gut, scratch your eyes out good time. This is going to be a fight.

Now, we’re all aware how the Canucks have been conducting themselves of late. They’re making no bones about it. They are not going to take losing sitting down. They will use any and all means at their disposal to fire their team up. Even throwing your 4th line out on the ice for an opening drop to instigate the other team to brawl. We all remember when that happened against the Calgary Flames. And seeing as how there’s no love lost between the Coyotes and Canucks we can be sure to see some fists fly tonight as well.

This is what the game is all about this time of year. These games heading toward the end of the season always get hairy. Emotions get chippy. Fundamentals get dicey. It often comes down to who has the most guts and who’s going to brutalize the other team into submission. Well, we all know that there isn’t a player on the Phoenix roster who isn’t willing to throw down, but what is Tippy telling his guys in the locker room?

Knowing Coach he’s reminding them that the best team wins despite how ugly it gets out there. He’s most likely urging them to grab hold of their emotions and just play good hockey. He’s probably using team leaders like Shane Doan to reiterate all of this, drilling it into their heads as best he can. After all, the team with the most goals walks away a winner, not the team with the most bloody knuckles.

Puck drops in Vancouver at 6PM Arizona time. You’ll hear more from me after the game. Until then, stay ornery Arizona.



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