Colorado Avalanche Hope to End the Roadie on a High Note

GLENDALE, AZ - MARCH 13: Nathan MacKinnon
GLENDALE, AZ - MARCH 13: Nathan MacKinnon /

The Colorado Avalanche hope to end their two-game road trip on a high note by beating the league-worst Arizona Coyotes.

The Colorado Avalanche don’t want to get coal for Christmas, so they’re definitely hoping for a win against the Arizona Coyotes tonight. After this game, they head home for their three-day holiday break. Granted, that’s not the longest break the team has had this season, but they still don’t want a loss to the Coyotes

The Colorado Avalanche are coming off a 2-1 overtime loss to the Los Angeles Kings, which was disappointing, but it was a hard-fought game.

Historically, the Colorado Avalanche have done very well against the Arizona née Phonix Coyotes. Since the ‘Yotes moved from Winnipeg to Arizona, the Avalanche have a 43-27-6-4(ties) record against the Coyotes.

Last season the two teams played against each other three times. Colorado took the first game in Arizona, but the Coyotes took the next two games.

How to Enjoy the Game

Game time: December 23, 6:00 pm MT
TV Networks: Altitude 2 TV (Avs feed), FSA-PLUS (Coyotes feed)
Radio: Altitude Radio (AM 950)

Playing Down to the Competition

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The Arizona Coyotes are vying with the Buffalo Sabres for being the worst team in the NHL. Right now, they have just 19 points (7-24-5), which puts them at the bottom of the NHL.

The Coyotes had an historically bad start. They lost their first 11 games, 10 of them in regulation. They recorded their first win in game 12, an overtime win. They didn’t record their first regulation win until game 21.

That made Colorado’s season last year look… well, not so embarrassing. However, the Avalanche can’t think like that. In the last few years, they’ve had a tendency to play down to the competition. They’re very much capable of beating the reigning Stanley Cup champions one night and then falling to the worst team in the NHL.

Players to Watch

Our captain, Gabriel Landeskog, has been really good this season. He has 26 points (14 goals, 12 assists) on the season so far. He’s on a hot streak with seven points in the last three games — that includes his second career hat trick just one month after his first career hat trick.

Defenseman Erik Johnson is returning to the lineup after serving a two-game suspension. We’ll actually want to watch the entire defense in the hope that they keep rallying around and helping each other — the d played really well in Johnson’s absence.

The Arizona Coyote’s 19-year-old rookie, Clayton Keller (7th-overall in 2016) leads the entire team in scoring with 26 points (12 goals, 14 assists). He’s one of those small, speedy type of centers, so Colorado will want to keep their feet moving when he’s on the ice.

Next: What Barrie Does for the Team

The Colorado Avalanche and Arizona Coyotes will meet two more times, both in Colorado. They play just after the Christmas break on December 27, and then not again until March 10.