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Preview: Avalanche at Coyotes

Arizona home after six-game road trip, backup goalie Calvin Pickard starts for Colorado

by Jerry Brown / NHL.com Correspondent

AVALANCHE (3-3-0) at COYOTES (2-5-0)

TV: 9 p.m. ET; ALT2, FS-A, NHL.TV

 
Avalanche team scope

Calvin Pickard will make his second start of the season for the Colorado Avalanche after Semyon Varlamov made 20 saves in a 1-0 home loss to the Winnipeg Jets on Friday. Colorado was 0-for-4 on the power play against Winnipeg and is 1-for-12 in the past four games. But coach Jared Bednar wasn't discouraged "I loved our power play [Friday], that's probably the most I've liked it all year, to be honest. We had one in the second period when we spent the whole two minutes in their zone. If you are doing that and creating good looks, that's pretty good." Special-teams play is part of an overall offensive slowdown for the Avalanche, who have scored six goals in their past four games (three losses) after scoring 10 in two wins to begin the season. Forward Rene Bourque needs one point for 300 in the NHL.

 
Coyotes team scope

Defenseman Michael Stone took line rushes with the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday but made a quick exit from the ice after the morning skate. Coach Dave Tippett said Stone, who sustained an upper-body injury during a 5-4 win at the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday, is questionable. Goalie Mike Smith (lower body) has not been on skates since he was injured on Oct. 18 against the Ottawa Senators and is still week-to-week, according to Tippett. Louis Domingue will start in the opener of a three-game homestand that follows a 1-5-0 road trip. Oliver Ekman-Larsson scored his fifth goal in seven games against the Flyers and leads all NHL defensemen in that category. The Coyotes haven't played a home game since Oct. 15, when they opened the season with a 4-3 overtime win against the Flyers. Ekman-Larsson had the winning goal in that game.

 
Avalanche projected lineup

Gabriel Landeskog -- Matt Duchene -- Jarome Iginla

Mikhail Grigorenko -- Nathan MacKinnon -- Mikko Rantanen

Rene Bourque -- Carl Soderberg -- Blake Comeau

Andreas Martinsen -- John Mitchell -Joe Colborne

Nikita Zadorov -- Erik Johnson

Francois Beauchemin -- Tyson Barrie

Eric Gelinas -- Patrick Wiercioch

Calvin Pickard

Semyon Varlamov

Scratched: Gabriel Bourque , Cody McLeod

Injured: Fedor Tyutin (groin)

 
Coyotes projected lineup

Max Domi -- Martin Hanzal -- Radim Vrbata

Jamie McGinn -- Jordan Martinook -- Anthony Duclair

Tobias Rieder -- Brad Richardson -- Shane Doan

Laurent Dauphin -- Christian Dvorak -- Ryan White

Oliver Ekman-Larsson -- Connor Murphy

Alex Goligoski -- Michael Stone

Jakob Chychrun -- Luke Schenn

Louie Domingue

Justin Peters

Scratched: Kevin Connauton, Lawson Crouse, Dylan Strome

Injured: Mike Smith (lower body)

 
Status report

Tyutin did not make the trip to Arizona and will miss his third straight game. … If Stone can't play, Connauton would take his place. Martinook has taken over the center spot on the second line after being one of the bright spots on the road trip.

 
Who's hot

Ekman-Larsson has three goals in the past two games. His goal against the Flyers was his 81st as a Coyote, passing Randy Carlyle for fourth on the franchise list for goals by a defenseman. The Coyotes are averaging 3.14 goals a game and have at least two in each of their first seven games.

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