Struggling Coyotes welcome Devils

( – The Arizona Coyotes hope to conclude a six-game
homestand with a fifth straight home win over New Jersey on Saturday night as
they host the Devils.

The Coyotes are just 1-3-1 on their residency as they lost a 2-1 decision to
the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday. Tobias Rieder had his club’s lone goal and
Mike Smith took a tough-luck loss as he stopped 43 of the 45 shots fired his

Arizona allowed Chicago to score twice on the power play as it fell to 2-13-2
over its past 17 games.

“They have a pretty good team with some pretty good players, and when you
traipse them out there on the power play seven times you’re playing with
fire,” Arizona coach Dave Tippett said. “We took penalty after penalty, and
Mike allowed us to hang around. But when you take that many bad penalties it’s
going to catch up to you.”

Though the Coyotes have not lost at home to the Devils since Feb. 12, 2003,
New Jersey did snap a three-game slide in this series with a 3-0 victory at
home on Feb. 23. It marked just the third time the Devils beat the Coyotes
over the previous 10 meetings.

Smith allowed two goals in the loss, falling to 3-1-2 lifetime versus the
Devils with a 2.44 goals against average and .926 save percentage in six

Mike Cammalleri scored twice and Cory Schneider posted a 38-save shutout,
moving to an excellent 4-1-1 in his career against the Coyotes with a 0.82
GAA, .970 save percentage and three shutouts in six games.

The Devils conclude a three-game trip tonight, opening the trek with a
regulation loss in Minnesota two days before Thursday’s 2-1 shootout setback
to the Colorado Avalanche.

“I think we liked a lot of things about our game tonight, but the first thing
that comes to mind is I liked our compete and work ethic,” Cammalleri said. “I
thought there was a consistency through our lineup as far as our commitment,
and that’s key.”

Andy Greene tallied a goal and Schneider made 28 saves for the Devils, who
have dropped five of their last eight (3-3-2).

New Jersey runs the risk of not having veteran forward Patrik Elias, who has
been dealing with back spasms recently that forced him out of practice early
on Friday.