Phoenix Coyotes (3-2-0) at Carolina Hurricanes (2-1-2)
|Date & Time||Sunday October 13, 2013, 1:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Carolina Hurricanes -121 / Phoenix Coyotes +110 --- Over/Under: 5.5
The Phoenix Coyotes and Carolina Hurricanes come into Sunday’s affair on opposite ends of a 2-1 game in their last outing as the Coyotes held off the Flyers in Philadelphia while the Hurricanes fell in a shootout to the Kings in what was a very competitive contest.
The Coyotes have been a bit inconsistent to start the year and while it is still very early in the season they will look to start stringing together some victories and build a nice point cushion in the early going and hopefully attain a top end seed in the Western Conference. Phoenix has been very much a relevant team over the past few seasons as they have given teams fits in the postseason and they have the roster to get back their once again this year if they can get solid goaltending from Mike Smith and can find a nice offensive balance to put pucks in the net. The Coyotes’ forte is on the blue line as Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Keith Yandle anchor a strong defensive core and they will be leaned on quite a bit in this one to keep the offense of the Hurricanes in check.
The Canes have earned a point in four of five contests this season as they have two victories and two overtime losses in that span and they’ll look to build on that success when they host the Coyotes on Sunday. Carolina was a team many expected to be in the running for the Eastern Conference crown a year ago but they never manifested into a threat and missed the playoffs once again, but with expectations this season perhaps in a more realistic light they could go the opposite way. The Canes do have talent and that starts in the crease with Cam Ward as he continues to be one of the league’s better and more underrated netminders. However, I like this position for the Coyotes as they continue their road trip and with a strong defensive unit to keep the Canes offense in check I think the Coyotes can bang in a few goals and escape Raleigh with two points.