By Dave Vest
GLENDALE -- The Coyotes will try to snap a three-game winless streak tonight when they host the New Jersey Devils tonight at Jobing.com Arena. The puck drops at 7 p.m. (Arizona time).
Phoenix is 0-2-1 since beating Edmonton on Jan. 5. The stretch is the club's longest without a victory this season.
"i think we have a great group," Coyotes Head Coach Dave Tippett said. "We have guys that really care and want to do well. But, when you get out of sorts a little bit you over-try and you don't think right. We have guys that are trying hard but they're not accomplishing what we need to accomplish. Don't overestimate activity for achievement."
Coyotes goalie Ilya Bryzgalov will be back in net tonight. Bryzgalov hasn't played since giving up four goals on 11 shots and getting pulled on Jan. 9 vs. the New York Islanders.
"He's had a couple real good days of work (in practice)," Tippett said after Wednesday's practice. "I just chatted with him and I think he's ready to go."
Phoenix is in sixth place in the Western Conference standings with 16 games to go before taking a 16-day break for the Olympics.
New Jersey (32-11-1) is leading the Eastern Conference with 65 points. Moreover, the Devils are the league's best road team with 16 wins in 21 games.
"We're pretty much like any other team that has success," Devils Head Coach Jacques Lemaire said. "It comes with hard work and team effort and that's what we've been doing. So far, we've been getting enough goals to win. Sometimes we get a lot and other nights they're hard to come by."
Left wing Zach Parise leads New Jersey with 20 goals and 46 points. Captian/right wing Jamie Langenbrunner ranks second with 40 points and first with 27 assists. Both players will play for Team USA at next month's Winter Olympics. In fact, Langenbrunner will be Team USA's captain and Parise will be one of four alternate captains.
On Tuesday, the Devils played a thrilling game against the rival New York Rangers. Goalies Martin Brodeur and Henrik Lundqvist recorderd shutotus. Patrik Elias scored the games only goal in the fourth round of a shootout and New Jersey won 1-0.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Click here to read more about Brodeur.
Coyotes right wing Radim Vrbata has notched two goals and two assists in the past four games. On Tuesday, he scored Phoenix's lone goal in a 3-1 loss to San Jose.
Devils goalie Martin Brodeur has posted four shutouts in his past 10 starts. On Tuesday, he stopped 51 shots by the New York Rangers in earning the 107th shutout of his NHL career.
The Coyotes again will play minus alternate captain/defenseman Ed Jovanovski. The NHL on Monday suspended Jovanovski for two games for elbowing John Tavares of the New York Islanders on Jan. 9. Jovanovski sat out Tuesday's 3-1 loss to San Jose. He is eligible to return on Saturday vs. Minnesota.
The Coyotes are 6-8-0 vs. Devils goalie Martin Brodeur, a future Hall-of-Famer. Two of his victories vs. Phoenix have been shutouts.
The Devils are an impressive 28-8-0 vs. teams from the Eastern Conference. Against Western Conference teams, New Jersey is just 4-3-1 and 1-2-1 on the road. In those four road games, the Devils allowed an average of four goals per game.
"I think it's going to be a low-scoring game, but I think we can win it if we are going to stick with our game plan."