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Race to the bottom: Kraken visit Arizona

Seattle gets one last chance for their first win against the Coyotes

Seattle Kraken v Arizona Coyotes Photo by Norm Hall/NHLI via Getty Images

What: Arizona Coyotes at Seattle Kraken

Where: Gila River Arena — Glendale, AZ

When: Tuesday March 22, 2022; 7:00pm PDT

Wait, who are we playing? Landlubber’s Guide to the Arizona Coyotes


Local TV: ROOT Sports NW

Streaming: ESPN+

Local Radio: 950 AM KJR

SiriusXM: Channel 91

Last Time Out

The Coyotes wont he last contest in Seattle by a score of 5-2, but that lopsided score isn’t a perfect representation of the closeness of the game. The Kraken were within one in the final five minutes before allowing not one, but two empty net goals. Your goal scorers for Seattle were Colin Blackwell and Calle Järnkrok — two guys who are no longer on the team. In fact, Seattle has scored six total goals across two games against the Coyotes from six different goal scorers, and four of those goal scorers now play elsewhere. Yanni Gourde is your team leader against the Coyotes with 3 points in those two games.

Stats, Streaks, & Droughts

The Coyotes have lost their last two games but they did kick off the month of March with a 4-game winning streak. That streak included wins over the league-leading Colorado Avalanche and the Toronto Maple Leafs. That’s hockey baby.

Young center Clayton Keller has been a steady force for Arizona this season. He’s tallied a team-high 61 points in 62 games this year and just saw an 8-game point streak come to an end on Sunday.

Meanwhile for Seattle, Yanni Gourde is riding a 6-game points streak and a 3-game goal streak. The team as a whole, however, has been pretty down since the All-Star break — they’ve won just four times in the 17 games since the break. The good news is that two of those wins came in the last 10 days. Seattle is 2-1-1 over their last four and still competes hard every night.

Players To Watch

As mentioned above, Clayton Keller has been one of the few bright spots in Arizona this season. The 23-year old is living up to his 8-year contract extension with goals like this...

Jakob Chychrun is one of the best young defenders in the NHL. He was nearly moved at the trade deadline, but Arizona couldn’t get the right price for him. He hasn’t played since March 12 after suffering an ankle injury, but if he suits up he’s always dangerous.

Then there’s the ageless Phil Kessel, who did this the last time these teams met:

Injuries, Illnesses, Additions, & Scratches

The Coyotes are dealing with a litany of injuries right now. Jakob Chychrun is still nursing an ankle injury. Forwards Jay Beagle and Antoine Roussell are both out with injuries that will sideline them for several weeks.

Seattle is fully healthy now, with the exception of Brandon Tanev, whom we miss dearly and can’t wait to see back on the ice next year. But the lack of injuries fails to tell the story of the players that will be missing in this one. The trade deadline hit the gameday roster hard: Mark Giordano, Jeremy Lauzon, Mason Appleton, Colin Blackwell, and Marcus Johansson are all gone. Most of the return in those trades is in the form of draft picks, so we’ll see Kole Lind back up with the NHL club tonight. Daniel Sprong came over from the Washington Capitals and is expected to get a chance to play in a Kraken sweater for the first time tonight, and Joonas Donskoi is back form a short stint on injured reserve. We can also expect to see Haydn Fleury and Will Borgen in the lineup with the loss of two other blue liners.

Odds & Ends

  • Phil Kessel currently has the third-longest iron man streak in NHL history at 962 games. He’s chasing down Keith Yandle, who’s 984 game streak is still active as well.
  • Seattle is one of five teams in the NHL to play the Coyotes at least twice and not yet win a game. The other four are fellow draft lottery contestants like the Senators, Red Wings, Canadiens...and the Maple Leafs.
  • Arizona is the only team with both a worse power play and penalty kill than the Kraken — they rank 32nd and 31st, respectively. (Seattle is 29th in both categories)