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Game 21 Preview: Avalanche at Coyotes

Colorado (15-5-0) take a hot trip south to take on the Phoenix Coyotes (14-4-3).

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Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports

It actually seems like the Are The Coyotes Staying Or Going saga has reached at least a temporary conclusion, and with that distraction gone, the team is thriving. Phoenix has jumped out to a 31-point start, good for 1st 2nd 3rd in the League West good lord division?

The Pacific is a true arena of death this season. Rough adjustment for Western Canada as perennially dominant Vancouver are out of the playoffs picture right now and perennially mediocre Calgary has joined perennially brutal Edmonton in the cellar.

The bad guys are riding a regulation home unbeaten streak to start this season, including rousing victories and a loser point over such powerhouses as Calgary, Edmonton, New York (R), and Ottawa. Okay, the Ca*ucks and Kings too, but most of their more difficult opponents have been on the road.

Colorado embark on a 2-game road trip, looking to play streakbuster once again. The Avs remain without suspected photon Matt Duchene, who has been ruled out for the trip due to his oblique issue. More time for Tuesday's outstanding O'Reilly - MacKinnon - Landeskog line is in order. Roy told Dater about his #1 overall, "I would say, the last four or five games, he might have been our best player out there." IMAGINE IF HE WERE SCORING ACTUAL GOALS. We'll see Semyon Varlamov back in net, and Cory Sarich returns to the blueline in place of Nick Holden (Denver Post). That would be next to Tyson Barrie which hey, sounds good to me, man.

There's no telling who the Coyotes are going to throw out there tonight. They have used 19 lineups in their 21 games (Nice numbers, guys!) due to numerous injuries, and coach Dave Tippett isn't planning on deciding until this morning anyway (AZCentral). Here's your lines for tonight based on the Chicago thwacking.

Avs Lines (projected):

O'Reilly - MacKinnon - Landeskog
McGinn - Stastny - Parenteau
McLeod - Mitchell - Talbot and his Fu Manchu WHICH IS AWESOME
Malone - Cliche - Bordeleau

Hejda - Johnson
Benoit - Guenin
Barrie - Sarich


Maybe coverage from the ladies and gents at Five for Howling will have a lineup for us soon.

TV: Altitude, Fox Sports Arizona || 9:00 EST || 7:00 MST || 02:00 GMT