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Coyotes at Predators preview

Arizona alternating wins and losses in past eight games; Rinne makes second straight start for Nashville

by Robby Stanley / Independent Correspondent

COYOTES (21-13-4) at PREDATORS (17-12-6)



The Game

Pekka Rinne is expected to start consecutive games for the first time since Dec. 3-7 when the Nashville Predators host the Arizona Coyotes at Bridgestone Arena on Monday.

The goalie, who made 29 saves in a 4-3 overtime win at the Boston Bruins on Saturday, is 4-1-1 with a 2.81 goals-against average and .905 save percentage in his past six starts for the Predators, 3-0-1 in their past four games and 8-3-3 in their past 14.

The Coyotes, tied with the Vegas Golden Knights for the Pacific Division lead, will try to win consecutive games for the first time since Dec. 3-5; they have alternated wins and losses in their past eight games.

Forward Taylor Hall has three points (one goal, two assists) in three games for Arizona since being acquired in a trade with the New Jersey Devils on Dec. 16.


Players to watch

Coyotes forward Clayton Keller has nine points (five goals, four assists) in his past seven games.

Predators defenseman Roman Josi has seven points (six goals, one assist) in a four-game goal/point streak.


They said it

"We obviously wanted to play a good game on the road. We've been good all year on the road, so we kind of had a good feeling going into this game that we were going to bounce back and have a good game. It's nice to get a win." -- Coyotes defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson on a 5-2 win at the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday

"Every game you can see him trying to make sure that we're moving in the right direction. It's visible to everybody who watches the game, the way he attacks it from the defensive zone through the neutral zone and in the offensive zone. His defense has been outstanding, and his offense shines every night. He's been on top of his game the entire year." -- Predators coach Peter Laviolette on defenseman Roman Josi


Coyotes projected lineup

Taylor Hall -- Christian Dvorak -- Phil Kessel

Clayton Keller -- Carl Soderberg -- Nick Schmaltz

Lawson Crouse -- Derek Stepan -- Vinnie Hinostroza

Michael Grabner -- Brad Richardson -- Conor Garland

Jakob Chychrun -- Alex Goligoski

Oliver Ekman-Larsson -- Ilya Lyubushkin

Jordan Gross -- Jordan Oesterle

Adin Hill

Antti Raanta

Scratched: Aaron Ness, Christian Fischer

Injured: Niklas Hjalmarsson (leg), Jason Demers (lower body), Darcy Kuemper (lower body)


Predators projected lineup

Calle Jarnkrok -- Ryan Johansen -- Viktor Arvidsson

Rocco Grimaldi -- Matt Duchene -- Mikael Granlund

Colin Blackwell -- Kyle Turris -- Craig Smith

Filip Forsberg -- Nick Bonino -- Colton Sissons

Roman Josi -- Ryan Ellis

Mattias Ekholm -- Dante Fabbro

Dan Hamhuis -- Matt Irwin

Pekka Rinne

Juuse Saros

Scratched: Yannick Weber, Austin Watson

Injured: None


Status report

The Coyotes did not conduct a morning skate Monday.


Stat pack

Hall has 21 points (eight goals, 13 assists) in 21 games against Nashville. … Rinne is 19-9-2 with a 2.06 GAA and .926 save percentage in 31 games against Arizona. … Johansen has six points (two goals, four assists) in a three-game point streak.

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