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Game #10 Preview: Arizona at New Jersey

Antti Raanta makes his third start of the season as the Coyotes continue their road trip tonight in Newark

by Alex Kinkopf @AEKinkopf / Game Preview

GAME #10: ARIZONA (5-3-1) AT NEW JERSEY (2-4-2)

4:00 PM PST - Prudential Center | Newark, New Jersey

TV: Fox Sports Arizona (Matt McConnell, Tyson Nash, Todd Walsh)

Radio: Fox Sports 910 AM Phoenix (Bob Heethuis)

Referees: Dan O'Rourke #9, Garrett Rank #7

Linesmen: Steve Miller #89, Derek Nansen #70

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> ARIZONA AT NEW JERSEY <

The Coyotes continue their four-game trip tonight in Newark, New Jersey, set to take on the Devils at Prudential Center in the first of two scheduled meetings between the teams this season.

New Jersey will make its lone visit to Gila River Arena on December 14.

The Devils, in the midst of a six-game home stand, have won their previous two games after starting the season with a string of six consecutive losses (0-4-2). New Jersey is coming off a 1-0 win over the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday; they will be operating on five full days rest tonight.

Arizona saw its four-game win streak and six-game point streak come to an end following Thursday's 4-2 loss to the New York Islanders. Michael Grabner and Conor Garland scored for the Coyotes, Jakob Chychrun registered two assists.

Mackenzie Blackwood will start for the Devils tonight. He is coming off of a 25-save shutout against the Canucks and is credited with both winning decisions in each of the Devils' two victories.

Antti Raanta will make his third start of the season for the Coyotes this evening, as confirmed by head coach Rick Tocchet following Thursday's game against the Islanders.

Tocchet also mentioned the possibility of getting "fresh legs" into the lineup, which could hint at Barret Hayton's return to the team's alignment, or rather defenseman Aaron Ness .

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> THREE THINGS <

HARD TO COME BY: It's tough to score, and it's tough to defend. Two extremes clash tonight. The Devils have scored a combined 19 goals through their first eight games played this season, which is the lowest total of any NHL team. The Coyotes' 19 goals-against through their first nine games played is tied for the fewest allowed in the NHL with the Boston Bruins and Vancouver Canucks. The Coyotes' top-ranked defense takes on the Devils' struggling offense.

FORGET ABOUT IT: The Coyotes will have an opportunity to rebound right away as they complete the first of their 13 scheduled back-to-back sets this season, looking to counter Thursday's loss with a win tonight. "That's why it's so nice to have a game tomorrow, we'll be able to forget about it," Oliver Ekman-Larsson said about the team playing again on Friday following Thursday's loss. "We'll clean things up a little bit in the morning, we'll talk about what we can do better and go out and do it in [New Jersey]. We still have two games on the road trip and we can still make it a good one."

ANTTI'S UP: Antti Raanta will make his third start of the season tonight. He comes into the game with a .926 SV% and a 2.44 GAA, stopping 63 of the combined 68 shots he's faced thus far. He turned away 29-of-23 in a 3-2 overtime loss to the Colorado Avalanche on October 12 and 34-of-36 in a 5-2 win against the Ottawa Senators on October 19. The Coyotes have earned three of a possible four points in Raanta's two starts.

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> LAST TIME AROUND <

March 23, 2019 - Arizona (1) at New Jersey (2) F/SO

The Coyotes and Devils certainly went the distance when they last met, playing deep into a six-round shootout at New Jersey's Prudential Center on March 23 of last season. Arizona eventually suffered a 2-1 shootout loss.

The teams traded first period goals - the only scoring to come in regulation time. Oliver Ekman-Larsson wristed home a shot from the point just 2:31 into the contest.

Conor Garland scored the Coyotes' lone shootout goal, his tally coming in the bottom of the fifth round. Darcy Kuemper stopped 31 of the 32 shots he faced in regulation and overtime, as well as four of the Devils' six shootout attempts.

The Coyotes finished with an 0-0-2 record against the Devils last season, both shootout losses.

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> NUMBER TO KNOW <

FIVE (5)

Conor Garland, in cutting the Coyotes' deficit to one with 1:05 remaining Thursday night, scored his team-leading fifth goal of the season.

He finished as Arizona's leading scorer against New Jersey last season, putting up a goal and an assist in two games against the Devils.

Garland was also the only Coyotes player to find the back of the net in the two shootouts between the teams last season.

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> QUICK HITS <

  • The Coyotes have not won in New Jersey since March 27, 2014. Since then, they are 0-3-2 when playing the Devils as visitors.
  • The Devils' power play ranks second-to-last in the NHL with a 6.9% success rate (2-for-29).
  • Oliver Ekman-Larsson ranks fifth in the NHL with 29.6 shifts per game and 11th with 24:47 minutes played per game.
  • Phil Kessel has registered 39 points (15G, 24A) in 49 career games against the Devils.
  • Arizona owns a 40-26-9-3 all-time record against New Jersey.
  • Jason Demers (45G, 154A) is one point away from 200 in his career.

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