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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, November 19th (All times eastern)

Phoenix Coyotes (12-9-0) at St. Louis Blues (6-8-4), 8 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Phoenix Coyotes will try to win back-to-back games for the first time this month when they visit the St. Louis Blues for a clash tonight at Scottrade Center.

The Coyotes have won two out of three and are coming off Wednesday's close victory in Minnesota. Phoenix hasn't notched consecutive victories since ending October on a three-game winning streak. After going 9-4-0 in the first month of the year, the Coyotes are just 3-5-0 in November.

Scottie Upshall scored the game-winning goal with 4:39 left in the third period, as Phoenix held on for a 3-2 win over the Wild at Xcel Energy Center.

Radim Vrbata registered a goal and an assist, while Jim Vandermeer also tallied for the Coyotes, who rebounded from a 4-1 loss against Tampa Bay on Monday.

Ilya Bryzgalov turned aside 24-of-26 shots as Phoenix downed the Wild for just the second time in 12 meetings.

Phoenix continued to play with a depleted blue line, as Kurt Sauer (headaches), Zbynek Michalek (lower body) and Ed Jovanovski (lower body) all missed the contest and are expected to sit out again tonight. Forward Matthew Lombardi (lower body) has missed the last two games, but is questionable for this evening's test.

The Coyotes are 6-4-0 as the guest this year and are capping a brief two-game trek tonight. Phoenix will return home for Saturday's game against Philadelphia before heading back out on the road for another two-game trip.

The Blues have just one win in their last eight games (1-4-3) and are in the midst of a three-game losing streak. After opening a five-game homestand with a 6-1 victory over Vancouver, the Blues have been dealt consecutive 3-1 losses by Nashville and San Jose.

The most recent setback came Saturday against the Sharks as Jed Ortmeyer netted the game-winner close to the midway point of the second period in the road win for San Jose. Evgeni Nabokov also did his part for the Sharks, stopping 38 shots in the victory.

Jay McClement had the lone goal for St. Louis, while Chris Mason faced just 16 shots and allowed two by him.

Blues forward David Backes suffered a lower-body injury in Saturday's game, but he is questionable for tonight's contest.

St. Louis, which is just 3-7-1 as the host this year, will close out its homestand with tilts against the New York Islanders and Boston.

The Blues and Coyotes have met twice already this season and Phoenix won both contests, notching an overtime victory at home on October 15 and then posting a 2-0 decision at St. Louis on October 29. The Coyotes have taken six of 10 overall in the series and they've won seven of their last nine in St. Louis.

11/19 10:53:05 ET


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