Phoenix Coyotes (34-26-11) at Pittsburgh Penguins (46-20-5)
|Date & Time||Tuesday March 25, 2014, 7:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Pittsburgh Penguins -191 / Phoenix Coyotes +173 --- Over/Under: 5.5
|TV Channel||Stream NHL games all season on ESPN+ for only $4.99 a month. Sign up now!|
The Coyotes look to rebound after a heartbreaking loss last night against the Rangers as they head to Pittsburgh for a date with the Penguins.
Phoenix held a lead late in the third period before surrendering two goals that forced overtime and the eventual game winner in the extra sessions that capped a furious rally from the Blue Shirts and send the Coyotes into shock. Phoenix was dealt a serious blow after goaltender Mike Smith left the game with a lower body injury and with the way he skated off it doesn’t look pretty moving forward and the playoff chances for the Coyotes have all but slithered down the drain. Phoenix was having a tough time with their best player healthy and now that he is out and the starting reigns fall on career backup Thomas Greiss it could be a long haul over the next little while until we hear the status on Smith. Things don’t get any easier for the Coyotes as they take on the Metro leading Penguins who are trying to catch the Bruins for top spot in the conference.
Pittsburgh heads into Tuesday night’s encounter with the Coyotes coming off a loss but are back on home ice where they have been virtually untouchable this season and will be looking to make amends for a sloppy effort their last time out. The Penguins have to be considered a favourite in the Eastern Conference as they have so much firepower offensively and very few teams can match up with them line for line but it will be their blue line that makes the difference to their playoff success this time around. The Pens have flopped each of the last two seasons in the playoffs and you can bet that Sidney Crosby and Marc Andre Fleury would love to get back to the Cup finals and hoist another Cup for a franchise who has expected more in the last few seasons. This was a bad spot for the Coyotes before Mike Smith went down and now that he is out I think the Coyotes’ season goes up in Flames and that starts tonight with a shellacking by the home town Pens.