CALGARY, AB -- The Phoenix Coyotes are struggling to replicate their early-season success.
Phoenix has won just two of its past 10 games and are hoping to halt a two-game losing streak Tuesday against the Calgary Flames. It was the Flames, though, who helped start the Coyotes slump in beating Phoenix 4-1 at Scotiabank Saddledome on Dec. 4. Since then, the always difficult Coyotes have gone just 4-6-5.
Fortunately, they haven’t fallen back too far. Phoenix remains eighth in the Western Conference and the team currently holds down a wildcard spot at the midway mark of the regular season.
This Season: 20-12-9, 49 points (8th in West)
Last Season: 21-18-9, 51 points (10th in West)
Flames Season Series Record: 1-1-0
No member of the Coyotes has more goals this season than Boedker, who shares the team lead at 12 with Shane Doan and Antoine Vermette. Boedker has joined the duo with two goals in his past three games. He’s also recorded an assist in that stretch to push his season total to 27 points in 41 games.
Though he leads Phoenix with 29 points, Ribiero has struggled to produce of late. The 33-year-old has gone three straight without a point and has just three in his past 10 outings.
THREE PLAYERS TO WATCH
Griess is expected to make his 11th appearance between the pipes this season Tuesday against the Flames. The 27-year-old has been sharp with a 5-2-1 record this season with a 2.13 goals against average and .930 save percentage. His only real blemish this year came in allowing four goals on 18 shots in Calgary in early December.
A surprise omission from Team USA’s Olympic entry, Yandle has been exceptional in the desert. The 27-year-old has a team-leading 22 assists while his 28 points rank third on the Coyotes. He also has points in four of his past five, amassing two goals and six points in that stretch.
Vrbata, another surprise Olympic omission from the Czech Republic, has been productive for Phoenix. The 6-foot-1, 194-pound forward shares the team-lead in points with Ribeiro at 29. His 11 goals is just one off the leading pace for the Coyotes, too.