Coyotes vs. Kings Pick – NHL March 16th

The Arizona Coyotes continue to play out the season with vacation on their minds. They are already in party mode and looking ahead to life without hockey shortly. From their results on the ice in the last couple of months, they have been tuned out and had their flights booked for awhile now. If people in Arizona didn’t have enough initiative to come and watch their games live, then a record of 21-40-3-5 and 1 win in their last ten games will have them running away from the arena. Offensively the team is in shambles, Shane Doan has completely regressed significantly and his better years in the league are long behind him. Also, the defense can’t stop a college team from scoring on them at the moment, and actually, for the greater part of this whole season they’ve been getting lit up. What are Coyote tickets going for in Arizona these days? If they are charging anything at all? As bad as they are I’d love to be out there taking advantage of tickets for having a heartbeat.

Then we have the LA Kings who are playing for their playoff lives. We all know what the Kings can do if they make it into the playoffs. Seeding has been irrelevant to their success. Would I want to be a number 1 seed that has to play the Kings in the first round? Oh hell no. I would be trying to avoid them at all costs. Having to play the Kings in the first round is not much of a reward for finishing 1st. But as it is now, they’ll need to make it in the playoffs before they worry about another run at the Cup. This will probably go down to the last game, so every game is important for the Kings. So in this game what we have are teams that completely on opposite ends of the motivation spectrum.

Arizona Coyotes @ L.A. Kings

The Coyotes organization is pretty well in disrepair currently. It is going to have to take a few good drafts for them to start looking up again. They played around the middle of the pack for so long that they haven’t had the added benefit of being able to acquire top draft picks. You don’t get rewarded in the NHL for being an average team. There are issues all over the ice for the Yotes. As Shane Doan nears the end of his career, the Coyotes are going to have to find somebody else to take on a leadership role, and that is really just the start for them. They are allowing 3.26 goals per game on the season, which is 28th in the league. Also in their last ten games they’ve allowed 3 goals per game. But the defense looks like a wall compared to the way the offense has been playing. In their past ten games they’ve scored only 1.10 goals a game. That is just from a lack of effort, plain and simple. Overall on the year they are scoring 2.03 goals a game, 29th in the NHL. Consequently, the Coyotes have one of the worst offenses and defenses in the league.

I find it hard to believe they are going to be able to do much of anything against the Kings’ defense in this game. Their defense has really stepped it up around this time of season the past several years, and it is no different now. In their last ten games they’ve allowed opposing teams to score only 2 goals per game on them. Why does this look like this game has a 4-1 final written all over it? To me that is what it looks like, and to me the Kings at -1.5 looks like a good bet.