Pittsburgh Penguins (22-17-8, 52 pts) at Phoenix Coyotes (23-24-2, 48 pts)
The Coyotes are sitting 8 points out of the playoffs. They need a win badly.
The Penguins are in the eighth and final playoff spot, with six teams within six points. They need this win badly.
The Coyotes started out the season poorly, going 4-12 in their first 16 games. They're 19-12-2 since that point. They also have a winning record at home (12-10-1). This won't be an easy game for the Pens.
The area to pick on the Coyotes is special teams. Their power play isn't very good, clicking at just 15.4%. Their PK is equally bad, even worse than the Penguins, at 79.3%. They also take lots of penalties. The Pens need to use their speed to draw penalties and then go to work on the power play. The question in my mind is do they have the legs to work that hard after their emotional win last night? We'll find out a lot about this team tonight.
Hidden stat - the Coyotes are 5-1 against the Eastern Conference.
Coyotes blog - There aren't many, but One Fan's Perspective is a good one. They (shockingly) want the Pens to lose tonight. Evidently Darren Pang was falling all over himself praising Crosby during the Coyotes telecast last night.
I'm anxious to find out what this team has in the tank tonight. They're going to be a little tired having expended so much energy last night, and tonight should be a good indicator of what we can expect later in the year when the schedule is equally crowded.
Let's Go Pens!