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Preview: Avalanche (52-22) at Coyotes (37-30)
BT Movements  ·  Line Movements
Date: April 26, 2013 10:00 PM EDT
  

The Phoenix Coyotes are officially eliminated from playoff contention, but they still want to finish the season on a positive note.

Hosting the Western Conference-worst Colorado Avalanche could help the Coyotes do that.

Phoenix will try to win its fifth straight in this series and extend its home point streak over the Avs to 12 on Friday night in its final game at Jobing.com Arena this season.

With Minnesota defeating Los Angeles 2-1 on Tuesday, the Coyotes (20-18-8) were officially knocked out of playoff contention for the first time in four seasons. It was a disappointing result for a club that advanced to its first conference finals a year ago, but that didn't stop the Coyotes from giving their best on Wednesday when they defeated playoff-bound San Jose 2-1.

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Captain Shane Doan picked up his first points in eight games by setting up first-period goals by Michael Stone and Keith Yandle.

"I know everybody's disappointed and that room is as disappointed as everybody else, but I know the leadership that Shane Doan has and he's not going to let this team back off," said coach Dave Tippett, whose team closes at Anaheim on Saturday.

"I wasn't worried about our commitment to playing hard tonight or whether we were going to go through the motions.'

Coyotes goaltender Mike Smith plans on giving it his all the final two games.

"... we don't like to be in the situation we're in, but there's two ways to look at it: go out there and feel sorry for yourself and just get through a game or you could show some pride and play like we did tonight," he said.

"It was a nice way to get a win.'

Having Smith in net could help the Coyotes extend their 9-0-2 run at home against the Avs (15-24-7). After making a season-high 41 saves in a 3-2 overtime victory in Denver on Feb. 11, Smith returned from a six-game injury absence on April 6 to make 24 saves in a 4-0 home win. He is 8-1-1 with a 1.41 goals-against average against the Avs, and the Coyotes have won four straight at home in this series.

That doesn't bode well for an Avalanche team that's a league-worst 3-16-4 on the road. Colorado, loser of 16 of 17 outside Denver following Tuesday's 3-1 defeat at St. Louis, will miss the playoffs for a third straight season, but it will likely avoid finishing with the league's worst record. Florida would have to win its final two games and the Avs lose their last two in regulation in order for Colorado to have the best odds of securing the first overall pick in Monday's draft lottery.

Avs left wing Cody McLeod probably wishes this season wasn't coming to an end. Five of his eight goals have come in the last five games, and he has a chance to find the back of the net in a career-best three straight.

"I got bumped up to (Ryan) O'Reilly's line,' McLeod said, explaining his recent surge. "I guess you're going to get more chances playing with them, and I've just been going to the net and kind of getting rewarded.'

Doan, who has team bests with three goals and five points in the season series, has 12 points in his last 10 home games versus Colorado.

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2014
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

 CURRENT LAS VEGAS LINE
 Team  ML   PUC   O/U 
 COL  +150      5.5 
 PHO  -170      
LAS VEGAS LINE MOVEMENTS

 CURRENT SPORTSBOOK LINE
 Team  ML   PUC   O/U 
 COL  +155      5.5 
 PHO  -175      
OFFSHORE LINE MOVEMENTS

 BETTING TRENDS
 Team  ML   PUC   O/U 
 COL  24%   1%   33% 
 PHO  76%   99%   67% 
BT MOVEMENTS

 NHL HEAD TO HEAD
 Apr 6, 2013  Score  ATS Results 
 COL 0 Under: 4 
 PHO 4 Cover: 194 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Feb 11, 2013  Score  ATS Results 
 PHO 3 Cover: 301 
 COL 2 Under: 5 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps

 NHL PREVIEWS
 Friday, Apr 26
 
    Islanders at Sabres
7:05 PM EDT
    Oilers at Wild
8:05 PM EDT
    Flames at Blackhawks
8:35 PM EDT
    Avalanche at Coyotes
10:05 PM EDT
 
 
 
  
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