GAME: Phoenix Coyotes (20-30-16-5) at Colorado Avalanche (37-17-12-5).
TIME: Sunday, 3 p.m. EST.
The Phoenix Coyotes don't seem to like playing for Rick Bowness.
Phoenix will try to end an 11-game winless streak and record its first
victory under Bowness when it visits the Colorado Avalanche in the back end of
a home-and-home series.
Matthew Barnaby and Paul Kariya scored power-play goals, leading Colorado to
a 3-2 victory at Phoenix on Friday.
Krystofer Kolanos scored for the first time in four months and Mike Comrie
added a short-handed goal for the Coyotes, 0-7-2-2 since a 3-2 win over
Columbus on Feb. 20.
Phoenix is 0-6-1-2 since Bowness replaced Bobby Francis as head coach on
Feb. 24. The Coyotes have just two wins in their last 23 games (2-15-3-3).
"I was disappointed with the way a couple of the young guys were competing.
The feet were moving but the intent wasn't there," Bowness said following
Friday's loss. "But in time they'll weed themselves out of here. If you don't
want to compete and get your nose dirty you won't be here next year when we're
The 11-game winless streak is the longest in Coyotes' history and the
third-longest in franchise history. The Winnipeg Jets went 19 games without a
victory in 1994-95 and were winless in 30 consecutive games during the 1980-81
Already missing top goal scorer Ladislav Nagy for the rest of the season,
Phoenix played without captain and leading scorer Shane Doan on Friday. Doan
was scratched with a charley horse sustained in Wednesday's 3-1 loss to Los
Friday's win was the third straight for Colorado, trying to hold off
Vancouver for the Northwest Division lead while chasing Detroit for first place
in the Western Conference.
The victory also completed a sweep of a three-game road trip, the last two
coming after Todd Bertuzzi's hit on Steve Moore in Vancouver on Monday.
"It was a crazy week but an important stretch," Colorado coach Tony
Granato said. "This is the time you get your playoff game face on and start
doing the little things you need to do to be successful in the playoffs."
The news, however, wasn't all good for the Avalanche, who lost two players
to injury Friday.
Left wing Alex Tanguay, the NHL leader with 54 assists, left with a knee
injury and right wing Dan Hinote hurt his shoulder in a second-period fight.
Colorado captain Joe Sakic - the league's second-leading scorer with 81
points - has eight goals and 11 assists in his last 11 games.
STANDINGS (through March 12): Coyotes - 61 points, 5th place, 24 PB, Pacific
Division. Avalanche - 91 points, 1st place, Northwest Division.
TEAM LEADERS: Coyotes - Nagy, 24 goals; Doan, 40 assists and 63 points;
Andrei Nazarov, 120 PIM. Avalanche - Milan Hejduk, 35 goals; Tanguay, 54
assists; Sakic, 81 points; Peter Worrell, 153 PIM.
SPECIAL TEAMS (through March 12): Coyotes - Power play: 15.1 percent (47 for
311), 22nd in NHL. Penalty killing: 82.2 percent (287 for 349), 22nd. Avalanche
- Power play: 21.7 percent (69 for 318), 3rd. Penalty killing: 84.3 percent
(263 for 312), 13th.
GOALTENDERS: Coyotes - Brian Boucher (9-16-8, 5 SO, 2.74 GAA); Brent Johnson
(4-5-2, 1, 2.39). Avalanche - David Aebischer (30-15-9, 4, 2.06); Tommy Salo
(17-18-6, 3, 2.58).
SEASON SERIES: Avalanche, 2-1.
LAST MEETING: Friday; Avalanche, 3-2. At Phoenix, Andrei Nikolishin also
scored for Colorado, and Aebishcer stopped 23 shots.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Coyotes - 10-13-10-2 on the road; Avalanche - 17-13-5-1