Ducks VS Coyotes
In Anaheim, CA
@7:30 PM Pacific Time
Ducks Look for First Win of the Season Wednesday vs. Arizona
The Latest: The Anaheim Ducks continue their first homestand of the regular season Wednesday against the Arizona Coyotes at Honda Center (7:30 p.m. PDT, Prime Ticket/AM 830). This is Anaheim's first of 11 Wednesday home games and among six that feature a 7:30 p.m. puck drop. The Coyotes represent the third consecutive Pacific Division opponent for the Ducks in the early season. Anaheim went 18-6-5 vs. the Pacific Division last year, earning wins in seven of its last nine games (7-2-0). Kevin Bieksa enters the contest one game shy of the 600-game NHL milestone, having scored 56 goals and 185 assists for 241 points with 879 penalty minutes in 599 career games (597 with Vancouver). Anaheim's homestand continues on Friday, Oct. 16 vs. the Colorado Avalanche (7 p.m. PDT) before concluding on Sunday, Oct. 18 vs. the Minnesota Wild (5 p.m. PDT).
Ducks-Coyotes: Anaheim and Arizona begin a five-game season series Wednesday at Honda Center. These two teams will play three games at Honda Center (Wednesday, Nov. 9, Feb. 5) and two at Gila River Arena (Nov. 25, March 3). The Ducks have earned standings points in 10 straight games vs. the Coyotes (8-0-2) and own an all-time record of 65-32-18 vs. their Pacific Division rival (36-15-7 in Anaheim). The 2014-15 season series featured four games that were decided by one goal (two via shootout) and another by a three-goal margin (4-1 Ducks win on March 3 in Arizona). Anaheim went on to win the season series with a 3-0-2 record. Ryan Getzlaf leads the Ducks in career scoring vs. Arizona, earning 17 goals and 40 assists for 57 points in 56 games.
Ducks team scope: Anaheim has scored one goal in two games, earning a point on Monday in a 2-1 shootout loss to the Vancouver Canucks in the home opener. More concerning to coach Bruce Boudreau is the lack of opportunities; the Ducks have generated 27 and 29 shots in their two games, and Boudreau wants to see a shoot-first mentality. "We have a lot of looks where we're trying to make the plays, make the passes, instead of shooting pucks at the net. You don't score unless you shoot pucks," said Boudreau. "We haven't been shooting them as much as we need to." Andersen has given the Ducks a chance to win each of their first two games, allowing three goals on 69 shots for a .957 save percentage.
Coyotes team scope: Arizona's young forwards and a rejuvenated goaltender combined to help the Coyotes win their first two games; they haven't started with three straight wins since 2003-04. Max Domi had a goal and an assist Friday in a 4-1 road win against the Los Angeles Kings, Jordan Martinook's first NHL goal was the game-winner in the home opener against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday and Anthony Duclair had an assist in each game. "The young guys bring that energy where there's no excuse for the older guys to be lackadaisical out there," said goalie Mike Smith. "It's a good combination." Smith did his part by allowing one goal in each game and saving 67 of 69 shots, earning Third Star of the Week honors. Tippett said Smith will start and that defenseman Zbynek Michalek, who missed the game Saturday because of an upper-body injury, should be able to play.