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At the Rink: Coyotes at Devils

by Mike G. Morreale / NHL.com

NEWARK, N.J. -- Arizona Coyotes captain Shane Doan is set to appear in his 1,400th NHL game Tuesday when the Coyotes face the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center (7 p.m. ET; FS-A, MSG).

Doan will be the 34th player in NHL history to reach the milestone.

"That's exciting for him," Coyotes coach Dave Tippett said. "He's the face of our franchise and has been around a long time. It's well deserved all the praise he gets. His longevity in the game speaks volumes about him because you've got to be a good player and a good person to stay as long as he has and he's obviously both for us."

Coyotes forward Anthony Duclair, who was acquired from the New York Rangers as part of the Keith Yandle trade in March, is tied for first among rookies with four goals and tied with teammate Max Domi for second among rookies with six points.

"I think that our young guys have helped us a lot and I appreciate the guys coming in and helping the way they have," Doan said. "Obviously Domi and Duclair have been really good and (Jordan) Martinook has done really well and (Klas) Dahlbeck on the back end has helped us a lot too. They have all helped us in parts of the games we've won, so that's always nice."

Coyotes goaltender Mike Smith is 3-2-2 with a 2.65 goals-against average and .918 save percentage in seven games against the Devils. Smith's next win will put him in fourth place on the team's all-time wins list. He's currently tied with Sean Burke with 97 career wins.

Devils coach John Hynes would like to see them build upon their first win of the season Sunday, 2-1 in overtime against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden. Goaltender Cory Schneider, who will make his third straight start Tuesday, was a big reason for the victory with 26 saves.

Take away the overtime winner by Lee Stempniak against the Rangers, and the Devils haven't held a lead at any other point this season. They have allowed the first goal in every game. The Devils have scored eight goals in their five games, two while playing 5-on-5. The Coyotes have scored 13 goals playing 5-on-5.

"I think we need to bear down in the first period a little bit more," Devils forward Stephen Gionta said. "We need to come out right from the start; that's kind of been a theme and that necessarily hasn't been a good thing. But that's a focus for us to get out there in the first period and get the pressure on them right away. We need to push to score. We haven't done that, so that's one of the things we're trying to focus on."

A quick start against the Coyotes, losers of two straight at home against the Minnesota Wild and Boston Bruins, could be the key to success. The Coyotes are playing the first of a five-game East Coast road trip.

"We've taken some significant steps," Hynes said. "I'd say the next step we took on was when we get pushed in games, there's more stick-to-itiveness, where maybe in preseason or the first few games we drifted from it. Now it seems when we hit some adversity in the games we stick to it more.

"We haven't played with a lead yet, but we also haven't unraveled and that's a good sign."

Here are the projected lineups:

COYOTES

Max Domi - Brad Richardson - Mikkel Boedker

Tobias Rieder - Martin Hanzal - Anthony Duclair

Kyle Chipchura - Antoine Vermette - Shane Doan

Jordan Martinook - Boyd Gordon - Steve Downie

Oliver Ekman-Larsson - Zbynek Michalek

Nicklas Grossman - Michael Stone

Klas DahlbeckConnor Murphy

Mike Smith

Anders Lindback

Injured: Joe Vitale (upper body)

Scratched: Stefan Elliott, John Scott, Matthias Plachta

DEVILS

Mike Cammalleri - Adam Henrique - Lee Stempniak

Jiri Tlusty - Travis Zajac - Kyle Palmieri

Brian O'Neill - Jacob Josefson - Jordin Tootoo

Stefan Matteau - Sergey Kalinin - Stephen Gionta

Andy Greene - Adam Larsson

Eric Gelinas - John Moore

David Schlemko - Damon Severson

Cory Schneider

Keith Kinkaid

Injured: Tuomo Ruutu (undisclosed), Patrik Elias (right knee), Jon Merrill (illness)

Scratched: Reid Boucher

Status report: Coyotes left wing Joe Vitale was placed on injured reserve to make room for Plachta, who signed with the Coyotes as a free agent on May 28, 2015. … Martinook, who missed the game Saturday with a lower-body injury, is expected to return to the lineup. … Richardson was centering Domi and Boedker during the morning skate, but Tippett said after practice he may keep Vermette at center on that line. That will be determined during pregame warmups. … Merrill, who practiced Monday and Tuesday, will miss his second straight game due to a stomach illness. Hynes said that while left wing Patrik Elias continues to skate on his own, he is not close to practicing with the team. Elias has been out since the start of training camp with a right knee injury.

Who's hot: Ekman-Larsson is tied with Moe Mantha for ninth place on the Coyotes' all-time points list among defensemen with 156 points in 345 games. … Henrique has points in consecutive games (two goals, three points) and in three of the past four (three goals, four points).

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