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Coyotes go for mini-series sweep against Ducks

by Corey Masisak

COYOTES (11-8-3) at DUCKS (15-3-3)


Last 10: Phoenix 6-3-1; Anaheim 7-1-2

Season series: This is the third meeting in five days between the two clubs. Phoenix won both of the contests at Arena in 5-4 shootouts.

Big story: The Coyotes can complete a sweep of this mini-series and cut the Ducks' lead in the Pacific Division to six points with a regulation victory.

Team Scope:

Coyotes: Phoenix has shown resiliency in these two comebacks, but if the Coyotes have designs on defending their division title they probably are going to need regulation wins against the Ducks. Cutting 40 percent of Anaheim's lead in five days would be a great start.

"Obviously they've built up a fairly huge lead on everybody else and they're a little more comfortable I'm sure, but we have to be a little desperate," Phoenix captain Shane Doan told reporters.

Phoenix is scoring a lot of goals this season, something that couldn't be said recently. The Coyotes are eighth in the League in offense at 2.91 goals per game. They haven't finished above 15th since 2001-02.

Ducks: Anaheim has lost consecutive games for the first time this season. The Ducks have yielded the lead three times in the two contests, including a third-period advantage.

"We've got a little work to do," center Ryan Getzlaf told the Ducks' website. "They're a good team, and we didn't allow ourselves to get going at any time. Every time we did something in a positive way, we took a step back. We've got to go back home and take care of our building now."

Anaheim has been the highest-scoring team in the Western Conference, and it has been a by-committee approach. Nine players have at least five goals, no one has more than eight, and the Ducks are averaging 3.38 per contest.

Who's hot: Getzlaf has four goals and 13 points in the past seven games. He has a trio of three-point games in the past six contests. He had three games with at least three points in 2011-12, a season when he had his career-low in goals (11) and fewest points (57) since his rookie campaign.

Injury report: Coyotes forward Radim Vrbata (lower body) and defenseman David Schlemko (shoulder) are on injured reserve. Vrbata is a possibility to return Wednesday. … Ducks forward Kyle Palmieri (upper body) missed the game Monday and is questionable. Defenseman Hampus Lindholm (concussion) is out.

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