By Dave Vest
Facing elimination, the Coyotes will try to pull even with the Detroit Red Wings today in Game 6 of their playoff series at Joe Louis Arena. The puck drops at 11 a.m. (Arizona time).
Detroit leads the best-of-seven Western Conference playoff series 3-2. Game 7, if necessary, would be played on Tuesday in Glendale.
“These games are very tight,” Coyotes Head Coach Dave Tippett said. “Every single play is a play that can have a bearing on the game. There are spurts where one team grabs the momentum over the other, but it's what you can do with that momentum. The last two games, they've (responded with) a couple of quick plays that have put the game out of reach."
He added, "We're going to be a team that never quits we're going to go in there and we'll be ready to go. We feel like we can compete with anybody, and we'll go in there with that mind-set."
to watch an exclusive, in-depth interview with Tippett recorded Saturday at the team’s hotel in Detroit.
will be in goal for the Coyotes, who are looking to advance to the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the first time since the team moved to Phoenix from Winnipeg in 1996. Bryzgalov has given the Coyotes a chance to win in all of the first five games, but he has yet to “steal” a game for the Coyotes in this series.
After scoring 11 goals in the first three games, Phoenix has scored just one goal in the past two games. With the season on the line, someone must step up offensively in Game 6.
Coyotes captain Shane Doan
, who missed Game 4 and 5 because of an undisclosed injury he suffered in Game 3, accompanied the team to Detroit but will not play.
"It's one thing when he has a desire to play, but he has to be functional," Tippett said.
The Red Wings won Game 4 and 5 by pouncing on scoring chances in the third period and by getting stellar goaltending from rookie Jimmy Howard, who is expecting another tough game today.
"This is the time of year when you're just leaving every single thing on the ice,” Howard said. “..The hardest game of the year is closing someone out and it's going to be a dogfight, just like every game in this series has been."