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'Yotes Notes: Rest is Critical During Hectic Stretch of Schedule

by Dave Vest / Arizona Coyotes

GLENDALE – The Coyotes flew from Dallas to San Jose on Friday and Head Coach Dave Tippett opted to cancel the afternoon practice he had scheduled after the team arrived.

The Coyotes are in the midst of a hectic section of their schedule in which they play seven games in 10 nights in five cities.

Off days are much needed.

"You can push and prod players to play hard and do the right things, but if they don't have energy to do that, you're going to go nowhere," Head Coach Dave Tippett said before the team departed on its current three-game trip to Dallas, San Jose and Anaheim. "We're a team that we need to have energy every night. We know how we have to play; a hard, committed game. If players don't have enough energy, you won't get that. So we'll give (them) the best chance to be successful."

The Coyotes will play the Sharks on Saturday night and then the Ducks within a 24-hour period. It will be a challenge, to say the least.

"Everybody has hard parts of their schedule, and it's just a hard part of our schedule," Tippett said. "But with that being said, I like the way our guys are competing. We're hanging around games. We're doing a lot of things to give ourselves a chance to win."

• Goalie Mike Smith owns an 8-4-2 record with a 2.12 goals-against average and a .943 save percentage in 15 career games against the Sharks. He has more shutouts (four) vs. San Jose than any other NHL team, and his aforementioned save percentage against the Sharks is his highest vs. any opponent in his career.

• The Coyotes have scored a power-play goal in four of the past five games and rank sixth in the NHL in power-play goals with 15. Ten players have scored at least one power-play goal for Arizona this season, and Antoine Vermette leads the way with three. On the flip side, the Coyotes have yet to score a short-handed goal through the first 20 games.

• Center Martin Hanzal missed his fifth game of the season on Thursday at Dallas because of a lower-body injury. Arizona is 1-2-2 in those five games, and were outscored 12-7.

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