Coyotes have chance to clinch at home -- again
Up 3-1 with a chance to clinch a playoff series at home, the 'Yotes are hoping not to repeat the same mistakes they made in the first round against Chicago, when they lost 2- 1 in overtime.
Needless to say, they know the Predators won't go down quietly.
"Definitely, we want to close it out tonight; it's going to be a tough game," forward Martin Hanzal said Monday morning. "They're not going to give us anything easily. So, we're going to try to close it up and hopefully we can do it."
A win Monday night would lead to a couple more firsts for the franchise: clinching a series at home (they are 0-5) and reaching the Western Conference Finals.
They would there join the Los Angeles Kings, who reached the WCF by way of a sweep of the St. Louis Blues. But that's for another day -- possibly Tuesday -- as for now the team is still focused on a Nashville team that will come out Monday night fighting for their season.
""There's moments that pass you by, you look back 20 years from now and you say, ‘that was the moment,' that was the moment that could make a difference and tonight that could be their moment where they could be a difference and we get back into the series a little bit and get it to 3-2," Predators coach Barry Trotz said. "That's all we can do."
Trotz made the decision to insert Alexander Radulov and Andrei Kostitsyn back into the lineup after the two were suspended for Game 3 due to a violation of team rules and held out of Game 4 due to the win in Game 3.
So they'll be at full strength Monday night, assuming no one hits up Old Town before the game.
"I think this is the hardest game of the series, and we asked [Ray Whitney] and he said the same thing; the fourth game, close it up, it's the hardest game of the series," Hanzal said. "They're not going to give us anything easily, so it's going to be a tough one."
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