The New York Rangers tonight are in Glendale to take on the Arizona Coyotes, as they look to make it three in a row against pretty bad teams. The issue though, is that the Rangers, while still putting up W’s, aren’t really playing that well. Yea, they beat Colorado, and they beat Toronto, but both of those wins were ugly, especially that Toronto win. Better teams beat the Rangers in those games, luckily the ‘Yotes aren’t a better team.
Simply put, the Coyotes can’t score at all, and their goaltending has been horrific. The goalie with the best SV% for the ‘Yotes is now with the Minnesota Wild (Devan Dubnyk), while the Wild suffer through a .897 SV% with Mike Smith. That’s not just horrific, that’s worse than backup horrific. Only the Sabres have allowed more goals (Oilers are tied with the ‘Yotes), and only the Sabres, Devils, and Hurricanes have scored fewer goals. Simply put, this team is quite terrible.
So naturally, this is a trap game.
What have they done lately?
Arizona has lost two in a row, but have gone 4-4-2 in their last ten games, including impressive wins over Montreal and Chicago. This is usually where you get a good breakdown of recent streaks, and how FF/PDO might be influencing them, but the ‘Yotes are just bad. Here’s their FF, rolling 10 game average, which cracked 50% for a five game stretch once this season.
And now PDO, which is heavily affected by SV%, has been below 100 the entire year. That’s on Mike Smith.
There’s no reason why the Rangers should lost this game. Hence trap game.
On the ice, Dave Tippett runs a very conservative style of play. The Coyotes run a 1-2-2 hybrid trap, which is something they’ve been running for some time down in the desert. They aren’t anything out of they ordinary when it comes to defensive zone schemes (zone defense), power play strategies (umbrella), or penalty kill formations (hybrid, depends on puck location/situation). This is a very passive hockey club that will capitalize on mistakes in the neutral zone.
PK: Reider, Vermette, Moss, Korpo, Doan, Chipchura, Martinook, Michalek, Campbell, OEL, Murphy, Yandle, Stone
Mike Smith gets the start.
PP1: McDonagh, Stepan, Nash, Brassard, Zuccarello
PP2: Boyle, Girardi, Kreider, Hayes, MSL
PK: Stepan, Nash, Girardi, Staal, Moore, Fast, Hunwick, Boyle, Hagelin, Klein, McDonagh, MSL
Cam Talbot is in net.
Be sure to check out our ticket link if you’re looking for tickets to the game. Game time is 8pm on MSG.