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Stars Face Coyotes At Mullett Arena

The Dallas Stars begin their three-game road trip with their first matchup against the Arizona Coyotes, followed by the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday and the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday.  The game against Arizona will be played at their new home, Mullet Arena in Tempe, Arizona.  The Coyotes will be wearing their new reverse retro jerseys for the first time tonight.

Coyotes’ Season Up To Now

The Coyotes are 3-5-1 this season and currently sit 6th in the Central division standings.  Arizona has scored at least two goals in all nine of their games, but sit at a negative ten goal differential with 26 goals for and 36 goals against.   The team has faced a difficult schedule to start the year, losing to Ottawa, New York, Winnipeg, Montreal, Boston and Pittsburgh.  Overlooking the team could be dangerous, given that they have beaten the Columbus Blue Jackets and Toronto Maple Leafs on the road and secured their first home win over the Florida Panthers in their last tilt on Tuesday.

Left winger Clayton Keller leads the way in points with ten, and they have three players with four goals: Lawson Crouse, Nick Ritchie, and defender Shayne Gostisbehere.  The Coyotes’ power play has been red-hot so far this season, coming in at a league third best 32.4%.  Both goalies on their squad seem beatable, however, with Karel Vejmelka posting a 3.84 goals against average with a 0.901 save percentage and Connor Ingram with a 3.70 goals against average and a 0.891 save percentage.

A New Home For The Coyotes

This season the Coyotes will be playing their home games in Tempe, Arizona at Mullet Arena which has an official capacity of 5,025 (less during hockey games).  This is by far the smallest arena any NHL team plays at as Winnipeg has the second smallest capacity at 15,321.  The team will share this venue with the Arizona State Sun Devils for the next three, possibly four seasons.  The Coyotes finished their lease at Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona after last season where they struggled to fill the venue on a regular basis.  Average attendance last season at Coyotes’ games was 11,601 (3rd worst in the league) at a venue that held 17,125 in Gila River Arena.  The team and city parted ways leaving the Coyotes searching for a new home in the desert.

The vibe playing at such a small arena is unusual, and on October 28th the Coyotes got to play their first home game and experienced Mullet Arena firsthand.  The team ended up losing in overtime to the Winnipeg Jets, but you can see in the video below just how different Coyote hockey is going to be at their new home.

Stars Stats

The Stars look to continue their momentum from their last home game against the Kings where they netted 3-of-4 on the power play and secured a 5-2 win.  The Stars’ special teams got a boost from that win over the Kings and now post the 8th best power play in the league at 26.5% and the 5th best penalty kill at 84.4%.  They are also second in the league in Goals Against/Games Played at 2.30 just behind Vegas Golden Knights at 1.73.  And, let’s not forget the Dallas Stars currently sit at first place in the Central Division with 13 points.

Top Line Customs

The top line for the Dallas Stars is trending at least as well as last season, if not better.  Jason Robertson, Roope Hintz, and Joe Pavelski have combined for 34 points in ten games which is 41.46% of the 82 total points for the Stars.  They also boast a combined plus-minus of plus 20 which kicks up to plus 28 if you include Miro Heiskanen in the conversation (and you always should).

Road Game Struggles

The Stars started their season out going 2-2-1 on the road, however, they were in all those games with a chance to win.  The team will depart for Tempe without top netminder, Jake Oettinger, although he could possibly be joining the team on the road after the game in Arizona, depending on how his rehabilitation proceeds.  Scott Wedgewood had a great game at home against the Kings and looks to build on that momentum on the road.  He is backed up by Matt Murray (not Anton Khudobin, due to cap space issues) who was signed to a one-year entry level after Oettinger went down with a lower-body injury during the game against the New York Rangers.

Dallas Stars Lineup

Jason Robertson—Roope Hintz—Joe Pavelski
Mason Marchment—Tyler Seguin—Denis Gurianov
Jamie Benn—Wyatt Johnston—Ty Dellandrea
Radek Faksa—Luke Glendening—Joel Kiviranata

Miro Heiskanen—Colin Miller
Ryan Suter—Nils Lundkvist
Esa Lindell—Jani Hakanpaa

Scott Wedgewood

Arizona Coyotes Lineup

Clayton Keller—Travis Boyd—Dylan Guenther
Liam O’Brien—Jack McBain—Christian Fischer
Matias Maccelli—Nick Bjugstad—Lawson Crouse
Nick Ritchie—Barret Hayton—Dysin Mayo

Juuso Valimaki—Janis Moser
Shayne Gostisbeher—Josh Brown
Patrik Nemeth—Troy Stecher

Connor Ingram

Where To Watch

The game will start tonight at 9:00 PM CDT and will be broadcasted to watch on Bally Sports Southwest and to listen via radio on The Ticket 96.7 FM/1310 AM.