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Coyotes welcome Ducks for Pacific battle in the desert
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Phoenix Coyotes will try to extend their point streak on home ice to a franchise-record 12 games when they welcome the Anaheim Ducks for Saturday's Pacific Division clash at Jobing.com Arena.
Although Phoenix dropped a 4-3 overtime decision against Colorado on Thursday, the club remained unbeaten in regulation on home ice this season. The Coyotes' 9-0-2 start in Glendale matches a club mark set during the 1998-99 season when ties were counted in the standings. The franchise also had a nine-game home point streak during the 1983-84 season when the club was still known as the Winnipeg Jets.
The Coyotes and Ducks are the only teams left in the NHL to not yet suffer a regulation loss on home ice this season.
Phoenix trailed Colorado 2-0 at one point in the second period on Thursday before rattling off three straight goals to grab a one-goal lead by the latter stages of the third period. However, the Avs received a tying goal from Cody McLeod with 3:14 remaining in regulation and Ryan O'Reilly notched the game- winner on a power-play tally with 41.1 seconds left in OT.
O'Reilly scored after Keith Yandle was whistled for slashing at 3:25 of the extra session. PA Parenteau slid a pass into the right circle, where O'Reilly beat Mike Smith to the far side.
Antoine Vermette, Martin Hanzal and Michael Stone lit the lamp for the Coyotes, while Smith stopped 26 shots in the losing effort.
"It's disappointing when you don't get those two points, there's no doubt," said Vermette.
Phoenix has lost two of its last three games, but still has managed to earn a point in five straight contests (3-0-2).
Coyotes forward Lauri Korpikoski and defensemen Zbynek Michalek and David Schlemko are questionable for Saturday's tilt due to various injuries. Korpikoski and Schlemko sat out Thursday's game, while Michalek has missed the past two outings.
While Phoenix tries to keep its home point streak going with a win, Anaheim will aim to win back-to-back games for the first time in nearly two weeks.
The Ducks halted a season-worst five-game losing streak with Friday's 1-0 overtime win against visiting Tampa Bay. Ryan Getzlaf broke a scoreless deadlock with just eight seconds remaining in OT, giving Anaheim its first win since a home triumph over Vancouver on Nov. 10.
"I just knew there wasn't much time left, so I just wanted to go on one last rush and get one on net," said Getzlaf of his game-winner. "I ended up getting two cracks at it and managed to get it over the shoulder, and I kind of blacked out after that."
Anaheim improved to 9-0-1 on home ice this season with Friday's win, but the club is just 7-6-2 on the road and has lost four straight as the guest.
Jonas Hiller, who was pressed into action Friday when expected starter Viktor Fasth suffered a lower-body injury during warmups, came up with 31 saves for Anaheim. Fasth has been ruled out for Saturday's game, meaning Hiller could get the call again.
Anaheim is 2-0 against the Coyotes this season. The Ducks notched a shootout win in Orange County on Oct. 18 and added another home victory over the Coyotes with a 5-2 triumph on Nov. 6. The Ducks have won three of four overall in this series, but have dropped three in a row and five of six at Phoenix.
11/23 11:20:48 ET
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