Image licensed from USA Today Sports
The Arizona Coyotes will travel to the Staples Center on Wednesday night to take on the Los Angeles Kings in a West Division matchup. These teams faced off twice in Arizona so far this season with the Kings picking up a win in both of those games in mid-February. The Arizona Coyotes (9-9-3, 21 points) are sixth in the West Division and are sitting at 3-3-0 on the road this year. They are on a two-game losing streak after dropping their last game to the Colorado Avalanche 6-2 on Saturday. The Los Angeles Kings (9-7-4, 22 points) are fifth in the West Division and are a shaky 3-2-3 at home this season. They are also riding a two-game losing streak after they lost on the road to the Minnesota Wild 4-3 on Saturday when they allowed a goal in the final second of overtime.
These teams are separated by a single point in the standings so this will be an interesting matchup. Let’s take a deeper dive into Arizona and Los Angeles to decide where we should be placing our wagers.
Take Me to the Promise Gar-land
The Arizona Coyotes have been stagnant in the early stages of this season and one of the bright spots is the play of right-winger Conor Garland, who has been playing extremely well to begin the season. The team does not have any players listed on the injury report so this Arizona team is fully loaded. Garland is leading the team in points and assists as he has 19 points (seven goals, 12 assists) this season and has recorded five points in his last five games. In the last game against the Colorado Avalanche, he finished with an assist with one shot in 16:37 on the ice. Garland has shown the ability to be one of the better passers and it’ll be time to see if the Coyotes can figure out a way to take advantage of one of the more solid goalie situations in the league.
Darcy Kuemper has spent the majority of the time in the net this season for the Coyotes and hasn’t been playing particularly well lately. In his last game against the Ducks, he allowed three goals on 21 shots in a shootout win to bring his record to 6-7-2 so far this season. On the season, he allowed 38 goals in 435 shots. Arizona has allowed 64 goals this season, which is 18th in the league. They have been above-average against opposing power plays as they have killed 58-of-71 (81.69 percent) of them so far this season. The Kings are an average offense so this will be a chance for the Coyotes to right the ship. He was a limited participant in practice on Monday while recovering with a lower-body injury so it will be interesting to see if he is able to play on Wednesday.
Center of Attention
The Los Angeles Kings have been stagnant in the early stages of this season and one of the bright spots is the play of center Anze Kopitar, who has been playing extremely well to begin the season. The team has only two players, both who are out at least for a couple of weeks, so the lines should be solidified. Kopitar is leading the team in points and is tied for fifth in the league in assists as he has 23 points (four goals, 19 assists) this season and snapped his three-game stretch without any points. In the last game against the Minnesota Wild, he finished with a pair of assists with one shot in 23:40 on the ice. Kopitar has shown the ability to be one of the best passers and it’ll be time to see if the Kings can figure out a way to take advantage of one of the best goalie situations in the league.
Before getting a free LA Kings cornhole board: 🙁
After getting a free LA Kings cornhole board: 😀
Visit https://t.co/bjP7FMyJ0f for more information.
— LA Kings (@LAKings) March 2, 2021
Jonathan Quick and Calvin Petersen have split time in the net this season for the Kings and haven’t been playing particularly well as a goalie unit. Petersen got the nod in the goal in the last game against the Wild, he allowed four goals on 42 shots in an overtime loss to bring his record to 4-4-2 so far this season. On the season, he allowed 26 goals in 360 shots. Los Angeles has allowed 56 goals this season, which is 12th in the league. They have been above-average against opposing power plays as they have killed 55-of-64 (85.94 percent) of them so far this season. The Coyotes are a below-average offense so this will be a chance for the Kings to get back on track.
- Los Angeles: 6-2 in their last 8 games
- Los Angeles: 6-2 in their last 8 games vs a team with a losing record
- Arizona: 7-21 in their last 28 road games
- Arizona: 1-8 in their last 9 games following a loss of 3+ goals
The Bottom Line
What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Looking at the most simplistic stat (goals per game) can begin to tell us where to go here. The Kings are 16th in the league with 2.95 goals per game while the Coyotes are 26th in the league scoring 2.57 goals per game this season. The health of Darcy Kuemper is in question as he is dealing with a lower-body so they might have question marks of his durability and availability in this game. Kopitar should be able to get the puck to the open player and get some points. Go with the Los Angeles Kings to win at home here.
Los Angeles +100
Want another opinion on this pick?
Full-Game Total Pick
These teams are two of the better teams at penalty killing as the Coyotes rank ninth in the league with an 81.7 kill percentage while the Kings are fifth with an 85.9 kill percentage. They also do not shoot the puck very often as Arizona is 30th in the NHL with 26.5 shots per game while Los Angeles is 27th with 28.1 shots per game. The under has hit in five of the last six games these two played against each other so go with the UNDER here.