NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, October 8th (All times eastern)
Minnesota Wild (1-0-0) at Phoenix Coyotes (0-2-0), 10 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Wayne Gretzky tries once again for his first win as a National Hockey League head coach tonight when the Phoenix Coyotes hold their home opener against the Minnesota Wild at Glendale Arena.
After a 3-2 opening-night loss to Vancouver on Wednesday, the Coyotes dropped a contest in Los Angeles by the same score the following evening.
On Thursday, Krystofer Kolanos and Oleg Saprykin had a goal each for the Coyotes, while goaltender David Leneveu made 25 stops between the pipes.
Gretzky's tenure as coach has been far from easy thus far. On Thursday he made a crucial mistake, wrongly penciling in forward Fredrik Sjostrom as a scratch then playing him. Once the in-arena statistics crew notified the officials, Sjostrom was ineligible for the remainder of the contest. Center Petr Nedved was supposed to be the one scratched on the lineup card, not Sjostrom.
Phoenix will visit Dallas on Tuesday.
This will be the first home opener the Coyotes have held at Glendale Arena. They didn't move into the building until December 2003, more than two months after the 03-04 season began.
Minnesota, meanwhile, will shoot for a 2-0 start to the 2005-06 season. On Wednesday, Marc Chouinard netted a hat trick and newcomer Todd White chipped in with a goal and two assists, as the Wild defeated the Calgary Flames, 6-3, at the Xcel Energy Center.
Pierre-Marc Bouchard added three assists for Minnesota, which improved to 2-2-1 in season openers.
Brent Burns and Kyle Wanvig also found the back of the net for the Wild, while Dwayne Roloson stopped 28-of-31 shots.
The Wild will visit Los Angeles on Sunday
Phoenix was 2-1-1 against Minnesota in 2003-04.
10/08 10:46:59 ET