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Versatile Korpikoski Helping Coyotes Charge

by Jerry Brown | Correspondent / Arizona Coyotes
GLENDALE -- He can play all three forward positions and serves as a nice fit on any of the four lines. He blocks shots, scores shorthanded, checks the opposition's top skill and his stickhandling and shooting is becoming a strong compliment to his blazing speed.

Lauri Korpikoski
To all but diehard Phoenix Coyote fans and shrewd NHL fantasy league owners, Lauri Korpikoski isn't any easier to recognize than his name is to pronounce. That is changing quickly, with the Coyotes now streaking toward another Western Conference playoff berth and the former understudy now playing a starting role.

The 24-year-old Finn, scooped up from the New York Rangers in the summer of 2009 for a player no longer in the League (Enver Lisin), is tied for the Coyotes team lead with 17 goals, has chipped in 19 assists and is doing it all for the bargain-basement price of $700,000.

This from the same player who scored in only three of the 71 games he played last season (five goals total), producing 11 points while playing mostly fourth-line minutes and penalty-killing shifts...

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