Mercifully, Arizona Coyotes Play Final Game vs Minnesota Wild Tonight

Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports /

The Arizona Coyotes play their final regular season game against the Minnesota Wild on Wednesday night.

The Arizona Coyotes (20-21-5 45 points) are hoping to win their last home game against their nemesis on Wednesday night for a variety of reasons. The third place Minnesota Wild (28-13-3 59 points) have won 4 games in a row and plan on making it 5 tonight at Gila River Arena. It would be nice for the Yotes to prove to themselves that thy can compete with the Wild and actually win a second game out of 8 tries. The Coyotes task will be even tougher, however, as‘s Craig Morgan reported this afternoon that Conor Garland injured his knee in practice on Tuesday and won’t play until further notice.

As we know, it’s difficult enough to play anyone without a healthy Conor Garland on the ice, but the Coyotes are going to make do (or not) with what they have. Cam Talbot will again start in goal for the Wild, while Darcy Kuemper will be between the pipes for the Yotes. We’ll see what kind of effort the Coyotes start with and whether their offense can come alive with a “next man up” mentality to pick up the slack.

Monday night’s game revealed how much time the Yotes spent in their defensive end of the ice due, in part, to their overall poor shooting on the other end. While the Wild seemed to pick up the pace and their confidence as the game wore on, the Coyotes seemed overwhelmed at times, and tired.

It’s possible that the Coyotes will pick up the pace tonight because they’re acutely aware that the St. Louis Blues, San Jose Sharks, and Los Angeles Kings are all breathing down their necks for 4th place. Fortunately for the dismal Yotes, those teams have played as pathetically as the Desert Dogs have recently and are all under “.500” in their last 10 games.

After they play the Wild on Friday, the L. A. Kings host the Coyotes for a game and then play the Ducks four times in a row before hosting the Coyotes twice more. The Sharks play the VGK tonight and the Avalanche on Saturday night before hosting the Coyotes next week on April 26 and 28. The Blues are “hurtin’ for certain'” as they again prepare for and adapt to another delay in their schedule that, as of today, stretches through May 13.

The bottom line is that Coyotes fans simply want wins, beginning tonight versus the pesky Minnesota Wild. If the Yotes take care of their own business, they’ll be fine. But that’s the problem with our nerve-wracking Coyotes: “If” isn’t reassuring at all. “Will” is a much better word, so let’s take the game to the Minnesota Wild starting tonight at about 6-ish. Let’s go Coyotes!