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Thrashers At Coyotes: Red Hot Phoenix Starts A Western Conference Road Trip

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The Phoenix Coyotes haven't let their ownership problems of the past year and a half get them down. Oh, no. Last season saw them return to the playoffs. Heck, it saw them finish fourth in the Western Conference with an impressive 107 points, the most that the team has ever accumulated. The team forced seven games with the Detroit Red Wings as well, in a season that showed the league that hockey could be successful in Phoenix.

This year, the attendance is still low because of the ownership issues. Even though they might well have a new owner in place in the form of Chicago businessman Matthew Hulsizer, they're having problems with a bond moratorium. If the statement's approved next week, the 'Yotes should be safe from Canadian re-location (of course giving more fuel to the Thrashers moving). With the end to the saga looming and stability in the future for Phoenix, the Coyotes are having a bang up season. They enter tonight's game against the Thrashers leading the Pacific Division with 69 points, and have turned around a 1-4-0 stretch of games with a five game winning streak. Goaltender Ilya Byrzgalov has a 1.18 GAA during this five game win streak.

To counter Phoenix's recent successful streak of play, the Thrashers have fallen out of playoff contention and are currently in tenth place in the Eastern Conference, two points behind the Carolina Hurricanes. Tonight could be tough for the Thrashers, because on top of the recent ownership cloud hanging over their heads, the team has also only beaten the Coyotes twice out of thirteen tries. They've never won in Glendale.

In their last ten games, the Thrashers have a 2-5-3 record, getting seven out of a possible twenty points.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.